Dark Island


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This beautiful traditional Scottish melody is presented here in an arrangement for my usual ‘flexible’ line-up of Flute 1, Flute 2 / Descant Recorder, Clarinet in Bb, Violin, Accordion / Piano / Guitar and Bass.

It starts with a short introduction before a simple presentation of the first part of the tune. As the piece progresses, harmonies and counter-melodies are added until, at the end, it returns to solo Flute with the rest joining in quietly for the final chord.

It was a very popular arrangement with the Folk Band at my last school, this being the final version of several performed over the years I was there. It was also a popular item at concerts and is an ideal Ensemble piece for KS4 and GCSE performances, possible also for some instrumentalists within KS3.

Other slow airs arranged for this ensemble include “Air”, Carolan’s Air”, “The Spinning Wheel” and “Flow gently, sweet Afton.”