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Ravel: Boléro, Rapsodie Espagnole, Etc / Tilson Thomas


Release Date: 10/25/1990 
Label:  Cbs Masterworks Catalog #: 44800   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Maurice Ravel
Performer:  John Harle
Conductor:  Michael Tilson Thomas
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 8 Mins. 

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This CD is reissued by ArkivMusic.

Notes and Editorial Reviews

One wonders whether there will ever be a falling-off in the apparently insatiable desire of conductors and the record companies to give us yet more versions of these admittedly beautiful orchestral pieces by a French master; and one marvels too at the presumably similar appetite for this repertory on the part of the record-buying public, for whom Ravel now appears to be the classical composer par excellence in the way that Tchaikovsky and Rachmaninov were two generations ago.

Still, there is room for a new issue of this quality. Michael Tilson Thomas brings a clear affection to the music but stops the right side of wearing his heart on his sleeve, so that phrases are caressed, not least in Ma mere l'oye, with a certain
Read more pudeur. In this work tempos are sometimes leisurely—the conversation between Beauty and the Beast is a minute slower than Abbado's more flowing performance for DG, but if this arguably brings a gain in expressive depth I am less attracted by a Rapsodie espagnole that feels self conscious and in which each movement lasts significantly longer than with Abbado. Still, here and elsewhere the LSO play most responsively; the Bolero is reliably exciting and the orchestral transcription of the Pike en forme de habanero (the one rarity here, with John Harle as the expressive saxophonist) is delightful.

-- Gramophone [5/1989]
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Works on This Recording

1.
Ma mère l'oye by Maurice Ravel
Conductor:  Michael Tilson Thomas
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: France 
Notes: Orchestrated: Ravel (1911)
Composition written: France (1908 - 1910). 
2.
L'éventail de Jeanne: Fanfare by Maurice Ravel
Conductor:  Michael Tilson Thomas
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1927; France 
3.
Rapsodie espagnole by Maurice Ravel
Conductor:  Michael Tilson Thomas
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1907-1908; France 
4.
Pièce en forme de Habañera by Maurice Ravel
Performer:  John Harle (Soprano Saxophone)
Conductor:  Michael Tilson Thomas
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1907; France 
Notes: Orchestrated: Arthur Hoérée 
5.
Boléro by Maurice Ravel
Conductor:  Michael Tilson Thomas
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1928; France 

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