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Thread: Maurice Ravel

  1. #51
    Member chalkpie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hFx View Post
    A very musical performance and beautiful recording. Again I have my preference cemented to that lost CD - can't even remember the label. The interpretations are slightly different. Most noteworthy are that the "feel" in the first two parts are interchanged. On "my" recording the Prelude is 10-15% slower and serene, similar to the feel of the Forlane in the Marriner/ASIF-recording. Yet again "my" Forlane is light and almost bouncy - just like the Prelude is when played by Marriner/ASIF

    However, the Menuet are quite similar as far as I remember. Maybe I would actually prefer Marriner/ASIF as the performances feel more (rightfully) solemn and soulful, albeit a bit oh the slow side. The final Rigaudon is also similar between the two versions.

    I do wish I could get my hands and ears over that particular CD once again.
    I would be very curious to know which version your talking about. Anyway, glad to know that you really enjoy the piece - right on man. It really means a lot to me, and it seems you feel the same way about it. Just one of life's real gems, without trying to sound corny or cliched.
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  2. #52
    Man of repute progmatist's Avatar
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    I also quite like his Mother Goose Suite, not at all childish in sound, as the name would imply. Rapsodie Espagnole is also worth mentioning. I have to say though that Bolero is a bit overplayed, almost as much as Beethoven's 5th.

    Quote Originally Posted by chalkpie View Post
    PS - for the proggers out there that aren't familiar with Ravel, check out "Pictures at an Exhibition" (written by Mussorgsky on piano). His orchestration of that piece almost renders the original useless imo, and surely gave our good pals ELP inspiration and some food for thought. Did Emerson ever mention Ravel back in the day?
    Several composers orchestrated Pictures at an Exhibition. I agree wholeheartedly that Ravel's is a cut above the rest.
    "Well my son, life is like a beanstalk, isn't it?"--Dalai Lama

  3. #53
    Member chalkpie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jake View Post
    Funny I just watched a BBC Proms concert with the National Youth Orchestra playing the Piano Concerto for Left Hand on Sunday evening via vpn. I think my favourite piece by Ravel is his almost throwaway piece Introduction and Allegro for Harp, Flute, Clarinet and String Quartet. He wrote this as an exercise in chamber orchestration and lost the score for years. It is simply exquisite.

    On Bolero - what's not to like???? It is an absolute masterpiece of orchestration where the melody is passed around the orchestra as the tension rises and the harmonies become more bizarre - a result of Ravel's studying some techniques of Stravinsky. A pure masterpiece.
    I've gone back and listened to the Introduction and Allegro - its pretty amazing and just so beautiful. I've always liked it, but its climbing levels for me this time around. Same with the Piano Trio. Re: Bolero - agreed on that. One of the most brilliant aspects for me is the modulation to E major near the end - it just seemingly comes out of nowhere but it totally transforms the mood and direction of the piece - how and why he came up with that is pure genius. The timing of it couldn't be better.
    If it isn't Krautrock, it's krap.

  4. #54
    Member bill g's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hFx View Post
    Debussy and Ravel have remained on my top 5 list
    Me too, along with Delius for his unparalleled affinity with nature. Generally rounded out by Mahler and Vaughn-Williams, or Stravinsky.

  5. #55
    Member Guitarplyrjvb's Avatar
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    My introduction to Ravel was Star Trek! They always used theme from Bolero to introduce the Romulans (or was it Klingons?)! Totally agree with Chalkpie's assessment of Pictures by Mussgorsky. It's not much as a solo piano piece but becomes powerfully majestic under Ravel's orchestration.
    Last edited by Guitarplyrjvb; 08-18-2018 at 02:52 PM.

  6. #56
    Member Zeuhlmate's Avatar
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    Miroirs is a breathtaking suite.


  7. #57
    Member chalkpie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zeuhlmate View Post
    Miroirs is a breathtaking suite.
    Absolutely. It's been in heavy rotation in this latest Ravel binge, which is still going strong. I also really love the two orchestrated pieces from this collection.

  8. #58
    So I was intrigued to read here that Ravel has written a piano concert. I thought "Ah, this has to be good". And I proceed to sample the thing in YouTube when I realize I know the entire piece note to note! I have this combined with a Prokovieff piano concerto, and with Martha Argerich on the piano. And I had played the whole CD to death some 20 years ago.

    The 2nd movement contains some of the most delicate music ever to be conceived. That's our Maurice. A delicate soul.

  9. #59
    Le Tombeau is one of my favorite pieces of music (prelude), both orchestral and piano versions.
    Solo piano players tend to play it way too fast and shreddy. My favorite version was by an oriental girl at some school recital years ago on youtube. Slow but beautiful.
    This is one of those rare pieces that lends itself to all kind of wacky interpretations without being ruined.


  10. #60
    Member chalkpie's Avatar
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    ^Love that first one!
    If it isn't Krautrock, it's krap.

  11. #61
    Member chalkpie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zappathustra View Post
    So I was intrigued to read here that Ravel has written a piano concert. I thought "Ah, this has to be good". And I proceed to sample the thing in YouTube when I realize I know the entire piece note to note! I have this combined with a Prokovieff piano concerto, and with Martha Argerich on the piano. And I had played the whole CD to death some 20 years ago.

    The 2nd movement contains some of the most delicate music ever to be conceived. That's our Maurice. A delicate soul.
    Great! The other Piano concerto "For the Left Hand" is easily as equally as good, don't miss it. But yes, the adagio assai movement of the Concerto in G is one of the single greatest pieces of music Ravel ever wrote. I'm still riding a Ravel binge, and loving every second of it.
    If it isn't Krautrock, it's krap.

  12. #62
    Quote Originally Posted by chalkpie View Post
    Great! The other Piano concerto "For the Left Hand" is easily as equally as good, don't miss it. But yes, the adagio assai movement of the Concerto in G is one of the single greatest pieces of music Ravel ever wrote. I'm still riding a Ravel binge, and loving every second of it.
    The "Left Hand" I definitely don't have! I am not that demented.

    I will listen.

  13. #63
    Member chalkpie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zappathustra View Post
    The "Left Hand" I definitely don't have! I am not that demented.

    I will listen.
    You are in for a real treat - its amazing. The very beginning is SO fucking hip. Try this one:

    If it isn't Krautrock, it's krap.

  14. #64
    Quote Originally Posted by chalkpie View Post
    You are in for a real treat - its amazing. The very beginning is SO fucking hip. Try this one:

    Oh yeah, this is great. That's the bassiest bassoon I heard in my life, at the start.

    Some great oboe moments too. I always associated Ravel with the oboe, I don't know why, in critical points in his music an oboe pops up.

  15. #65
    Member chalkpie's Avatar
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    He LOVED the oboe. A signature sound of his often used in his orchestrations. I guess the same way Picasso used blue(s) and red(s) in his works.

    PS - glad you dig the piece man! Remember that part is just the left hand! Crikey.
    If it isn't Krautrock, it's krap.

  16. #66
    Quote Originally Posted by chalkpie View Post
    He LOVED the oboe. A signature sound of his often used in his orchestrations. I guess the same way Picasso used blue(s) and red(s) in his works.

    PS - glad you dig the piece man! Remember that part is just the left hand! Crikey.
    Oh I've listened already 3 times and I am loving it. You can hear some typical Ravel bits in it, but the setting is way different, more modern I would say. Thank you very much Frank.

    With Ravel I never have to try. He hits centre straightaway.

  17. #67
    Member chalkpie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zappathustra View Post
    Oh I've listened already 3 times and I am loving it. You can hear some typical Ravel bits in it, but the setting is way different, more modern I would say. Thank you very much Frank.

    With Ravel I never have to try. He hits centre straightaway.
    That's so great man

    You are correct - Ravel's DNA shows up in everything he does, even as diverse as his works get in such different mediums and styles. And such a true point about his music being effortless, not really having to try hard....in my view, that is an immense gift. I guess some could view that as a negative aspect (i.e. boring music, don't even have to try), but that is so far from the truth here. His music is complex, beautiful, inspiring, very French, etc etc. An old music colleague of mine who also loved his music used to say that Ravel's musical jewel chest isn't full to the top, but it only contains diamonds (or something to that effect)! I think its a great quote and very true.
    If it isn't Krautrock, it's krap.

  18. #68
    Quote Originally Posted by chalkpie View Post
    That's so great man

    You are correct - Ravel's DNA shows up in everything he does, even as diverse as his works get in such different mediums and styles. And such a true point about his music being effortless, not really having to try hard....in my view, that is an immense gift. I guess some could view that as a negative aspect (i.e. boring music, don't even have to try), but that is so far from the truth here. His music is complex, beautiful, inspiring, very French, etc etc. An old music colleague of mine who also loved his music used to say that Ravel's musical jewel chest isn't full to the top, but it only contains diamonds (or something to that effect)! I think its a great quote and very true.
    I've been listening to this quite a lot frequently, and I am loving it enormously. I sent the link to my good friend, who is a real composer and was not familiar with it. He said it's so good that he was scared to listen to it in its entirety - fearing some sort of interfering with his own work.
    Anyway, one more time thank you - it's not a very well known work for some mysterious reason.

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