My name is Bear Gutsav and I am named after Gustav Holst, a British composer who was born in Cheltenham, England in 1874 and died in London in 1934. Infact his birthplace is just a stone’s throw from where I have been living. Holst was a composer of many choral part-songs, song cycles, operas and orchestral pieces. Most people who know of him would say that his best known work is The Planets which he wrote between 1914-1916. You can learn more about Holst here.

Gustav Holst was the first of two children to Adolph and Clara von Holst. His father’s family were from Sweden. And since I have never been to Sweden I have decided now to leave the safe and familiar surroundings of Cheltenham and set off on a journey to try and unite myself with Gustav Holst’s ancestors. Big challenge I know.

Like the young Holst I suffer from asthma so I need to be cared for with particular attention to anything that might trigger another attack. Please keep me away from dusty areas especially cats and feathers. I am also a great pianist so if you are really lucky you might just be able to catch me performing a great piano piece…but only if you are really lucky and I feel in the mood. Of course I’ll need access to a piano or keyboard.

Take good care of me. Keep me for a few days or weeks and keep a record of what we get upto. It would be great if you could send home some photos to my home. You can do that here by completing this form.

I am trying to get to Riga in Latvia which is where Gustav Holst’s grandfather came from. I could have chosen somewhere perhaps a little more exciting, although I expect most Rigan’s would say it is exciting! However on my quest to visit the ancestral roots of Holst it seems a good place to start.

So can you help me get there?

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