The Better Angels of our Nature (2013)
for oboe and string orchestra
Duration: c.14 minutes
40-page A4 saddle stitched sheet music
“We are not enemies, but friends. We must not be enemies. Though passion may have strained, it must not break our bonds of affection. The mystic chords of memory will swell when again touched, as surely they will be, by the better angels of our nature.”
The inspirational plea for reconciliation from Abraham Lincoln’s first inaugural address on March 4th 1861 was my starting point for a fifteen minute concerto for oboe and strings for the virtuoso oboist Emily Pailthorpe, to whom the work is dedicated. It is divided into two continuous movements, separated by Taps, the bugle call which is played traditionally for funerals or at sunset.