(Click to view the entire score)
Catalogue #:POA-011
Duration:2' 55"
Composer Bean Sí
Patrick O'Shea

Bean Sí

flute solo

The “Bean Sí” – Anglicized “banshee” – is a female spirit in Irish folklore often associated with “keening” or the wailing of a lament, usually in connection with the death of a great figure or the scion of an important family. As the fairy woman had supernatural powers, she would sing this lament when the family member died, even if the person had died far away, and the news of the death had not yet come to the family. In this way, the wail of the Bean Sí was the first warning of a death, and in some stories, the wailing would even come before the person had died – an ominous sign.

This short flute solo was composed as a lament on the death of my grandfather, Martin Edward O’Shea (1915-1999).