Melodies for Two by Laura Larson

Music for Oboe, Violin or Flute, and Organ or Piano

Volume One: Composers of Scandinavia

Edited by Marilyn Biery and Stephanie Shapiro

With Elizabeth Sobieski (violin) and Laura Larson (flute)

These pieces represent Scandinavian composers from the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. In some cases, they are household names (Grieg, Sibelius, Nielsen), others are as yet mostly unknown female composers (Andrée, Netzel, Röntgen-Maier) and deserve to be heard. The compositions are arrangements of piano works, pieces for violin and piano, and a vocal song.

Our collaboration on this volume culminated in a performance at the Grosse Pointe Memorial Church, with all of the pieces performed either on flute, violin, or oboe. It was a huge and time-consuming undertaking, especially for Marilyn and Stephanie, and I was happy to have something meaningful to do during the pandemic.

Stephanie shared that “It was a joy to work with Marilyn and Laura on this. It was a great pandemic project and a special thank you to Marilyn for sharing all of her invaluable editing wisdom!”

From Marilyn Biery, editor; “We started this project during the pandemic shutdown because we missed playing together. All of this collection was done virtually … choosing the pieces, editing, and making some basic recordings for use at Jim’s church. By the end of the summer, 2020, we had so much material collected we decided to make this a volume dedicated to Scandinavian composers. Our second volume, Baroque and Classical music by German and Austrian composers, has been submitted to the publisher for their consideration. A third volume, music of Central Germany from the Romantic period on, is in draft form.”

I was very pleased to be asked by Marilyn and Stephanie to look at the oboe part and edit it for flute. As I am of Swedish and Norwegian heritage, I especially enjoyed discovering the work of little-known female Scandinavian composers. It brings to mind the question, “Why was their music lost to the vestiges of time?” It is very lovely music and I encourage everyone to discover it for themselves. Most of the pieces in this collection are accessible for amateur and high school flutists and will give the professional recitalist additional options in choosing repertoire to round out a program.


Laura Larson

Note on the editors:

Marilyn Perkins Biery: DMA; AAGO; Instrumental Acquisitions Editor, Augsburg Fortress; Bridge Director of Music Ministry Kirk in the Hills, Bloomfield Hills, Michigan.

Stephanie Shapiro: Adjunct applied faculty at Wayne State University; principal oboe in the Lansing and Adrian Symphony Orchestras.

Laura Larson: Flute/piccolo with Detroit Opera; adjunct applied faculty at Wayne State University.

Elizabeth Sobieski: violinist, Rochester Symphony Orchestra, Rochester, MN.