Every spring I couldn't resist and if I met a dandelion, I picked it (with apologies) and had to play it. This reminded me of what everyone knows from childhood but forgets: dandelions have an amazing range in pitch and colour. There are pieces that you can play melodies in a range of more than one octave. There are bass dandelions, even double bass dandelions. Sopranos and discants. With a soft and soothing sound, with the sharp timbre of a bugle call. But it's always as if you're listening to the sun itself when you play the dandelion. And it also always sounds somehow honest and immediate. And I even think that by playing them you will summon the good field elves and fairies from the picturesque groves...

Playing dandelions is pure joy and magic. But there is a small catch. As an herb completely dependent on a direct connection to the Earth, the dandelion will not last if you take it away from its source. After a while, it wilts and can no longer be played. Which makes it completely impenetrable for studio or concert use. Except for one other little thing - dandelions don't grow at all in winter. Really. But the Czech musician always finds his own advice in the end...

I picked the dandelions, wrapped them in a wet rag and quickly took them home where they found a sustaining bath in a tub of cold water and were ready for their next use: recording individual stems and their successively shortened versions to the computer. With an accent, in legato... It took two days. This created a bank of tones that could only be sorted and made into meaningful groups of tones in the sampler.

And so the world's first DANDELIOPHONE was born.

As a musical instrument with a novel sound and unusual expression, it is widely used in my compositions - for example in the incidental music for the play The House of Bernarda Alba, in meditation music... However, it has so far found its greatest use and starring role in two CDs dedicated to children of all ages and other similarly lovable beings. The first I composed and recorded in 2009 and titled "To Children, Elves and Fairies... for a beautiful day" and the second was created in 2014 under the title "To Children, Elves and Fairies... Merry Christmas".

To Children, Elves and Fairies... for a beautiful day

The world's first CD featuring the Dandeliophone. The tones of dandelions preserved in music, so that they can warm up the beauty of spring and summer meadows full of restless and cheerful elves and beautiful and mischievous fairies... Instrumental compositions with titles and content encouraging imagination and poetic thinking. Children and parents alike.

To Children, Elves and Fairies... Mery Christmass

Even at Christmas they carol, sing and make merry. And they play dandelions and the dandeliophone. And many other instruments. You might be surprised at the variety of instruments that can be used to play Czech carols. Elves and fairies from all countries have joined together and the result is merry, sweet, colourful and above all Christmas music. The most exotic instrument here is definitely the dandelion organ. It plays at the very end of the CD.

The carols are instrumental. The booklet contains the texts of all the carols. The illustrations are by Zuzana Čuchna.


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