The title of the piece, Before the Mountains were Born, comes from Psalm 90. Many beautiful pictures came into my mind whilst reading this psalm. I pursued my reminiscences of all those "frescoes" whilst composing the piece. When the RSO Stuttgart approached me for a new piece, featuring their amazing woodwind section, I felt the time ripe for the use of my third favourite psalm (my works Wings of the Wind and Kingdom of Silence have featured my first two favourites, Psalms 104 and 94). Being less descriptive than Psalm 104, it gives little opportunity for music and text to work hand-inhand, scene by scene. It is a persistent prayer: the fleeting thoughts of a human being appealing to the superior power. The work does not begin as a "standard" concerto. The soloists – flute, oboe, clarinet and bassoon – start playing within the woodwind group. They then proceed one after another towards their soloist stands at the front of the orchestra. After their virtuoso "cadenzas", the reverse process begins. Towards the end they begin to join the woodwind section "musically" again. Before the Mountains were Born is dedicated to the conductor - Andrey Boreyko.