(Written in 1994)

One movement work for large wind orchestra.

Dedication: To John Greaves.

Commissioned: By Cambridge University Music Society. 


 2pic / 2fl* / 2ob / cor / Ebclt / 3Bbclt* / 2bassclt / 2bsn / Cbsn / SATBsax / 4hrn / 6trpt / 4trb / eup / tuba* / db / pfe / 4timp / perc(5).

 [*these parts all divide]

 [Perc – 2glock / 2xylo / vib / t.bells / 2sdr / tdr / 2bdr / 3tomtom / tamb / trgle / 3t.blks / claves / c.cym / 2s.cym / gong]

Timing: c.15 mins.

Programme notes:

    Contemplations of Orion is based on the dual ideas of the constellation in the night sky and its associated Greek myths. Various legends about this basically amiable, if rather lustful, Greek hunter-giant have provided me with inspiration, but the piece is definitely not meant to be programmatic. The myths, as well as the more ambiguous motifs of the night sky and stars, act as a spring-board for ideas which are developed from a musical rather than extra-musical standpoint. Hence the title, “Contemplations of Orion” – implying, I hope, a free working of ideas over and above the basic concept.


  • June 1994: Cambridge Music Society Wind Orchestra, conductor Benjamin Greenaway.
  • September 1996: National University Honours Band, conductor Colin Touchin.
  • November 1997: Harrow Young Musicians Symphonic Winds, conductor Adrian Brown.


  “I especially enjoyed Contemplations of Orion by the young composer Samuel Becker.”

John Davie, Winds magazine.