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Pierre's Tuesday Blog

Once Upon the Internet: The Piano Music of Maurice Ravel

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Earlier this month on my Friday Blog and Podcast, I provided a sample of orchestral and piano music by Maurice Ravel to commemorate the 75th annioversary of his passing. This instalment of Once Upon the Internet considers some of his piano music, as downloaded years ago from the original MP3.COM.

Although Ravel has often been compared to Claude Debussy, it is fair to say that Ravel was more of a classicist than his great contemporary, being more influenced by the concertos of Mozart and Saint-Saëns than by Wagner, whose music he disliked. He was also drawn to jazz and music from Spain and Russia. A fastidious worker, he honed his works to perfection, leading Stravinsky to talk about "Ravel the Swiss Watchmaker".

The works I chose for this playlist fall under two categories: works that were exclusively written for the piano (amongst which Gaspard de la nuit stands out) and works that weree transcribed for piano or later orchestrated by Ravel. Ravel was a superb orchestrator, who spent much of his time orchestrating piano works by himself (examnples here are Pavane pour une infante défunte and Rapsodie Espagnole)and others, notably Mussorgsky (Pictures of an Exhibition ).


Maurice RAVEL (1875-1937)

Pavane pour une infante défunte, pour piano, MR 19
Alla Nosova, piano

Jeux d'eau, pour piano, MR 30
Francine Kay, piano

Sonatine pour piano, MR 40
Bronika Kushkuley, piano

Rapsodie espagnole, MR 54
(First version, for two pianos, 1907)
Corrado Greco & Luca Schieppati, piano duet

La valse, MR 72
(Piano transcription by Ravel, 1920)
Andrew Schwartz, piano
Downloaded from MP3.COM, 21 dec 2001

Gaspard de la nuit, pour piano, MR 55
Suzanne Bradbury, piano
Downloaded from MP3.COM, 21 nov 2001

Playlist URL:

November 23 2012, "I Think You Will Love This Music Too" will feature a new podcast "In Memorian: Glenn Gould" at its Pod-O-Matic Channel. Read more November 23 on the ITYWLTMT Blogspot blog.

Updated Nov-20-2012 at 11:33 by itywltmt

Classical Music , Composers , Recorded Music