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Wild Things

Animals present us with alternative visions of ourselves. In them, we see where we came from and where our deepest instincts might be rooted. Throughout history, musicians have sought to imitate animals – to capture their free-spirited unpredictability, their extraordinary anatomy and their majestic power. Playlist curated by Andrew Mellor.Read more…

This playlist contains some known and loved examples of composers filling their works with animal characteristics– from the tiny birds beloved of Messiaen to the lumbering cattle of Mussorgsky's 'Bydlo'. We hear from tigers, elephants, frogs and crows, no less than three cats, as well as mythical dragons and firebirds. In between, we sample another vital aspect of nature in music that goes hand in hand with these beasts: musical visions of wild weather and furious, animalistic dances.

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