FORGOTTEN musical scores from colonial artist Henry Mundy were yesterday played for the first time in more than 150 years at Queen Victoria Museum and Art Gallery.
Mundy's eight sets of quadrilles, played by Launceston composer and pianist Ron Nagorcka, were performed for the launch of Launceston author Peter Sims' Colonial Artist Henry Mundy and his Music .
``Musicologists all over the world had been looking for this music, lost to the world since 1838 when it was published in Launceston,'' Sims said.
``It did pop up in a secondhand op shop in Launceston by chance, and was given to me for my birthday, I then realised its significance as the lost music.''
He said he was ``over the moon'' when his suspicions were confirmed by a range of internationally renowned institutions and musicologists.
``It is of national significance . . . it's more than just music,'' Sims said.
``I felt an obligation once it was in my hands.
``I could have just given it to the museum and forgotten about it, but I knew about the family and had written a fair bit beforehand about his music and art.''
The self-published book was completed in December, just three months after the scores were sourced.
Forty pages of music, as well as a collection of Mundy's portraits, have been printed in each limited-edition copy.
Sims said eight descendants of Mundy, as well as about 60 other guests, were present for the launch.
He said the music would be recorded and broadcast nationally in the coming months.