The magical quest

Long, long ago, fairytale characters and sea monsters were common in the world and some places were too dangerous for people to live. This story tells of a magical quest in this very different land.

Dragons of many kinds roamed the earth to the East and West. Harpies flew in the skies, and the Unicorn could be glimpsed through the trees in old forests across the land. Scotland was also home to creatures of legend. The Scottish people shared the same land as fairytale characters and magical beings such as Faeries and Kelpies who were often seen near rivers and lochs.

One of the most evil of all the world’s creatures lurked in the North-West of Scotland. This was the cruel sea monster named Misterstourworm, where he came from is shrouded in mystery; no one knows his origin or age. This gigantic sea monster, a revolting serpent had terrorised the people of Tiree for hundreds of years and the lord of the land was weary from trying to destroy him. Coran, a young boy from one of the villages, steps up and offers to go on the magical quest to defend his people. The lord laughs at the young lad saying "you're just a daft boy" but Coran pleads and shows his determination and the lord finally allows him to go.

Coran's magical quest to free his people begins...

His journey is an adventure of great courage, encountering fairytale characters and supernatural friend and foe, but will he succeed in killing the giant sea monster?

The Music... A note from the composer, Savourna Stevenson

The story and the music for Misterstourworm and the Kelpie's gift were conceived and grew together. Although I had decided to write a piece of classical music for children, a Scottish "Peter and the wolf", I knew that I wanted to aim this new work at a slightly older audience: to create an action packed adventure, a kind of magical quest for the whole family. While specific instruments are used in Peter and the wolf to depict characters, I have used themes and motifs that are developed and grow along with the plot. I have used a large orchestra in order to represent the awesome size of the sea monster. The work is full of musical images which are easily recognisable: the terrifying sea monster on the brass and lower woodwind, the shimmering magic of the fairy queen, the whinnying of the sad Kekpie on the woodwind and the exhilarating full ensemble of the chase and the fight. It was always my aim that the music should illustrate the story so closely that on second hearing, there would be no need for the narrative.

Click here to listen to the sea monster Misterstourworm Intro Sample

Click here to listen to The Faerie Queen Sample


The Kelpie... Close

The Kelpie, a supernatural shape-shifter commonly taking the form of a horse lives in rivers and lochs. Its fur is usually grayish white in colour, and often appears as a pony that is lost. Its skin is seal like but extremely cold to the touch and its continuously dripping mane and tail is how most people identify it. However, the Kelpie in this story shares many of the characteristics with another water creature, the Scottish water spirit called Each Uisge. This creature is, by all accounts the most dangerous creature that inhabits the water in our country. Although not able to take the form of a handsome man as the Each Uisge sometimes does, our Kelpie not only lives in fresh water rivers and lochs similar to most Kelpies but can also live in the sea and sea lochs. Like the Each Uisge our shape-shifting Kelpie appears as a fine horse or pony near the waters edge. If a man mounts it, he sticks to its skin, which becomes glue like and the Kelpie immediately rears up, dives back into the water where it takes its victim deep down to their death. It is thought that the Kelpie came from a strain of wild horses that somehow went mad, they then adapted to live in the water, but no one really knows.

Click on an image below to read about other characters...

MisterstourwormCoranKelpieFaerie QueenLord of Tiree