In 1982, electro-acoustic composer and music educator Jon Appleton narrated and set two folktales to original music performed on Synclavier, an early digital synthesizer he helped to develop. The first, “The Tale of William Mariner,” is based on the true story of a young cabin boy aboard a ship that sailed to the South Pacific island of Tonga in 1806. The second, “The Snow Queen,” is an adaptation of the Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale. It tells the story of a little girl who rescues her best friend from the Snow Queen’s palace in Spitzbergen. Originally released under the title Two Melodramas for Synclavier, Appleton has played this music before audiences of all ages with an emphasis on young audiences. In recent years Appleton wished he had simply called it Two Children’s Tales.
Liner notes contain the complete transcriptions of Appleton’s narration.