Mythical Creature(s)

Concerto for Horn and Wind band.

In the Chinese mythology there are four heavenly animals.

  • The Chinese Dragon
  • The Phoenix
  • The Turtle
  • Ki-Lin (unicorn)

In this concerto for horn all of these heavenly animals are presented. The hornist is a kind of storyteller and evaluates to a mythical creature as well. The concerto contains four movements:

1. The Chinese Dragon – (Long)

The Chinese dragon is one of the four heavenly animals and would also be the founder of the Imperial Family.

Dragon Queens provides rain, rivers, lakes and seas. They represent wisdom, strength and goodness. An angry Long Wang causes storm, fog and earthquakes. He protects fishermen and watercourse, but punishes wasters of water. One of them is Pan Long, it lives in the ocean. It seems to be the seahorse we all know today.

2. The Phoenix – (Feng Huang)

His song would be the source of the Chinese scale. Feng Huang lives with Ki-Lin (see also 4th movement) in the Hills of Vermilion. Only in peaceful times, or when a great wise or good emperor is born, the Feng Huang leaves the Land of Immortals to announce prosperity, accompanied by many other birds who honour him as the most beautiful.

3. The Turtle – (Wugui)

The Turtle is one of the animals who was involved in the origin of the earth. It is seen as an oracle.

4. The Unicorn – (Ki Lin)

The unicorn is an animal with male (Ki) and female (Lin) powers. It’s voice is like a church bell. It was born in the heart of the earth and lives behind the clouds. It appears only to announce important events or births. (Just like Feng Huang (2nd movement)).



Horn solo and Windband
11 minutes
Janssen Music

About the composer

Christiaan Janssen

I was born on the 19th of February 1974 and have been involved with music since the age of five. When I was seven I went to the “Muziekacademie” in ’s Gravenvoeren in Belgium. There I learned Theory of music and Harmony, and also to play the trumpet and church organ. After this I studied conducting of wind, fanfare and brass bands with Pierre Kuijpers, organ with Dorthy de Rooij and symphony orchestra conducting with Jan Stulen at the Conservatory of Maastricht. I also took additional courses in conducting with several well known conductors. I have been conducting actively since 1994 and at present I am the conductor of a symphony orchestra and two wind bands. Since 1985 I have been experimenting with sound and have been developing as a self-taught composer. I have quite a wide number of compositions to my name amongst which are more than 100 pieces for wind bands. My works have a romantic character and often consist of only a few motifs from which the entire work develops. Counterpoint and a transparent instrumentation play a very important role in this. My work is, like that of all composers, influenced by past masters. The biggest influences on my work have been Johann Sebastian Bach, Anton Bruckner and Richard Strauss. In 2014, → “LBM Jubel-mars” was the winning composition at the composition contest of the “Limburgse Bond van Muziekgezelschappen” (LBM) in the occasion of their 75th anniversary jubilee. In 2015, → Cortège received a special mention by the Atlantic Reed Consort, during the annual Calefax Composers Competition of the famous Dutch wind ensemble Calefax. (→ website Calefax) In 2017, → Capriccio was the test piece in the 1st division for windbands, during the 2nd European Contest for windbands, fanfarebands and brassbands in Luxembourg. Also in 2017, → Suite #6 received a special mention by the Atlantic Reed Consort, during the annual Calefax Composers Competition 2017. I am regularly asked to write a piece or make an arrangement for a wide variety of ensembles, from chamber groups to wind bands and symphony orchestras. To an increasing extent my compositions are being performed by renowned orchestras such as, Fanfare band Brass-aux-Saxes Westerlo (B), Royal Bevers Wind orchestra Beveren-Leie (B), Royal Wind Band of Thorn (NL), Royal Wind Orchestra St. Michael Thorn (NL), Royal Philharmonic Wind orchestra Bocholtz (NL), Royal Old Wind Band of Eijsden (NL), Royal Wind Orchestra Sainte Cécile Eijsden (NL), Gran Canaria Wind Orchestra (ES), Banda de Lalin (ES) and many more…

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