Morning Mood

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"Morning Mood", (Norwegian: Morgenstemning), more popularly known as just "Morning", is a composition belonging to Edvard Grieg's Peer Gynt, Op. 23, written in 1875 as incidental music to Henrik Ibsen's play of the same name, and was also included as the first of four movements in Peer Gynt Suite No. 1, Op. 46. The melody in the piece is alternating between flute and oboe.


The piece depicts the rising of the sun during act 4, scene 4, of Ibsen's play, which finds the eponymous hero stranded in the Moroccan desert after his companions took his yacht and abandoned him there while he slept. The scene begins with the following description:

A grove of palms and acacias at dawn. Peer Gynt is up a tree, protecting himself with a broken-off branch from a swarm of apes.[1]

As the Peer Gynt suites take their pieces out of the original context of the play, "Morning Mood" is not widely known in its original setting, and images of Grieg's Scandinavian origins more frequently spring to the minds of its listeners than those of the desert it was written to depict.[2]

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  1. ^ Henrik Ibsen, Peer Gynt, Peter Watts (trans.), Penguin, 1985, p. 123
  2. ^ Jeal, Erica (2001-08-11). "Prom 27: Peer Gynt". The Guardian. Archived from the original on 2012-01-02. Retrieved 2012-01-02. one listened differently to "Morning" on discovering that it doesn't illustrate dawn in the fjords but a hazy sunrise in the middle of the Sahara. 

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