Maurice Ravel

Biography

Born: Mar 7, 1875; France   Died: Dec 28, 1937; France   Period: Romantic
Maurice Ravel was among the most significant and influential composers of the early twentieth century. Although he is frequently linked with Claude Debussy as an exemplar of musical impressionism, and some of their works have a surface resemblance, Ravel possessed an independent voice that grew out of his love of a broad variety of styles, including the French Baroque, Bach, Mozart, Chopin, Spanish folk traditions, and American jazz and blues. Read more His elegant and lyrically generous body of work was not large in comparison with that of some of his contemporaries, but his compositions are notable for being meticulously and exquisitely crafted. He was especially gifted as an orchestrator, an area in which he remains unsurpassed.
Ravel's mother was of Basque heritage, a fact that accounted for his lifelong fascination with Spanish music, and his father was a Swiss inventor and engineer, most likely the source of his commitment to precision and craftsmanship. At the age of 14, he entered the Paris Conservatory, where he was a student from 1889 to 1895 and from 1897 to 1903. His primary composition teacher was Gabriel Fauré. A major disappointment of his life was his failure to win the Prix de Rome in spite of numerous attempts. The difficulty was transparently the conflict between the conservative administration of the Conservatory and Ravel's independent thinking, meaning his association with the French avant-garde (Debussy), and his interest in non-French traditions (Wagner, the Russian nationalists, Balinese gamelan). He had already established himself as a composer of prominence with works such as his String Quartet, and the piano pieces Pavane pour une infante défunte, Jeux d'eau, and the Sonatine, and his loss of the Prix de Rome in 1905 was considered such a scandal that the director of the Conservatory was forced to resign.
Ravel continued to express admiration for Debussy's music throughout his life, but as his own reputation grew stronger during the first decade of the century, a mutual professional jealousy cooled their personal relationship. Around the same time, he developed a friendship with Igor Stravinsky. The two became familiar with each other's work during Stravinsky's time in Paris and worked collaboratively on arrangements for Sergey Diaghilev.
Between 1909 and 1912, Ravel composed Daphnis et Chloé for Diaghilev and Les Ballets Russes. It was the composer's largest and most ambitious work and is widely considered his masterpiece. He wrote a second ballet for Diaghilev, La Valse, which the impresario rejected, but which went on to become one of his most popular orchestral works. Following his service in the First World War as an ambulance driver, and the death of his mother in 1917, his output was temporarily diminished. In 1925, the Monte Carlo Opera presented the premiere of another large work, the "lyric fantasy" L'enfant et les sortilèges, a collaboration with writer Colette.
American jazz and blues became increasingly intriguing to the composer. In 1928 he made a hugely successful tour of North America, where he met George Gershwin and had the opportunity to broaden his exposure to jazz. Several of his most important late works, such as the Sonata for Violin and Piano No. 2 and the Piano Concerto in G show the influence of that interest.
Ironically, Ravel, who in his youth was rejected by some elements of the French musical establishment for being a modernist, in his later years was scorned by Satie and the members of Les Six as being old-fashioned, a symbol of the establishment. In 1932, an injury he sustained in an automobile accident started a physical decline that resulted in memory loss and an inability to communicate. He died in 1937, following brain surgery.
In spite of leaving one of the richest and most important bodies of work of any early twentieth century composer, one that included virtually every genre except for symphony and liturgical music, Ravel is most often remembered for an arrangement of another composer's work, and for a piece he considered among his least significant. His orchestral arrangement of Mussorgsky's piano suite Pictures at an Exhibition has been wildly popular with concertgoers (and the royalties from it made Ravel a rich man). Boléro, a 15-minute Spanish dance in which a single theme is repeated in a variety of instrumental guises, has been ridiculed for its insistent repetitiveness, but it is also a popular favorite and one of the most familiar and frequently performed orchestral works of the twentieth century. Read less
Ravel: Daphnis et Chloe / Nezet-Seguin
Release Date: 04/14/2015   Label: Bis  
Catalog: 1850   Number of Discs: 1
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Ravel: Complete Works For Piano Duet / Thorson, Thurber
Release Date: 03/22/2011   Label: Brilliant Classics  
Catalog: 94176   Number of Discs: 2
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Ravel: Arrangements For Wind Quintet / Orlando Quintet
Release Date: 12/10/2013   Label: Brilliant Classics  
Catalog: 94772   Number of Discs: 1
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The Complete Piano Works Of Maurice Ravel / Artur Pizarro
Release Date: 06/09/2015   Label: Linn Records  
Catalog: 523   Number of Discs: 2
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Royal Mezzo - Barber: Andromache's Farewell;  Britten: Phaedra;  Ravel, Berlioz / Kalmar, Et Al
Release Date: 06/10/2008   Label: Cedille Records  
Catalog: 104   Number of Discs: 1
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Work: Gaspard de la nuit

Browse 51-75 of 114 Available Recordings
1 2 3 4 5
  • 51.
    Michelangeli In London - The June 1959 Concert
    Label: Music & Arts Programs Of America   Catalog: 955 Release Date: 01/28/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Muzio Clementi,  Maurice Ravel,  Frédéric Chopin
    Performer:  Arturo Benedetti Michelangeli
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  • 52.
    Idil Biret - Archive Edition 1 - Ravel, Stravinsky
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8571274 Release Date: 01/26/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Maurice Ravel,  Igor Stravinsky
    Performer:  Idil Biret
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  • 53.
    Piano & Forte / Mihaela Ursuleasa
    Label: Berlin Classics   Catalog: 16542 Release Date: 11/10/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Alberto Ginastera,  Maurice Ravel,  Johannes Brahms,  Ludwig van Beethoven  ... 
    Performer:  Mihaela Ursuleasa
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  • 54.
    Friedrich Gulda - Early Recordings
    Label: Audite   Catalog: 21404 Release Date: 10/01/2009   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Sergei Prokofiev,  Frédéric Chopin,  Maurice Ravel  ... 
    Performer:  Friedrich Gulda
    Conductor:  Igor Markevitch
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin RIAS Symphony Orchestra
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  • 55.
    Label: Gramola   Catalog: 98804 Release Date: 09/01/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Robert Schumann,  Maurice Ravel
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  • 56.
    Nuit / Ciro Longobardi
    Label: Stradivarius   Catalog: 33835 Release Date: 08/11/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Salvatore Sciarrino,  Maurice Ravel
    Performer:  Ciro Longobardi
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  • 57.
    Sound of Verse - Pasternak, Ravel, Rachmaninov / Inna Faliks
    Label: Msr   Catalog: 1333 Release Date: 08/11/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Maurice Ravel,  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Boris Pasternak
    Performer:  Inna Faliks
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  • 58.
    Ravel: Piano Works / Romain Descharmes
    Label: Audite   Catalog: 92571 Release Date: 06/09/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Maurice Ravel
    Performer:  Romain Descharmes
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  • 59.
    The Pierre-laurent Aimard Collection
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 4691492 Release Date: 05/04/2009   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Olivier Messiaen,  Claude Debussy,  Robert Schumann,  Franz Liszt  ... 
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  • 60.
    Schumann: Nachtstucke Op 23;  Scriabin, Ravel, Hilliger, Mozart / Herbert Schuch
    Label: Oehms   Catalog: 733 Release Date: 04/28/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Robert Schumann,  Heinz Holliger,  Alexander Scriabin,  Maurice Ravel  ... 
    Performer:  Herbert Schuch
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  • 61.
    Icon - Walter Gieseking - Poet of the Keyboard
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 65081 Release Date: 04/21/2009   Number of Discs: 8
    Composer:  Maurice Ravel,  Claude Debussy,  Edvard Grieg,  César Franck  ... 
    Performer:  Walter Gieseking,  Bernard Walton,  Sidney Sutcliffe,  Cecil James  ... 
    Conductor:  Kurt Schröder,  Herbert von Karajan
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Hessian Radio Orchestra Frankfurt,  Philharmonia Orchestra
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  • 62.
    Ravel: Gaspard De La Nuit, Etc / Vladimir Ashkenazy
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 410255 Release Date: 01/07/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Maurice Ravel
    Performer:  Vladimir Ashkenazy
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  • 63.
    Debussy, Ravel: Piano Works / Cecile Ousset
    Label: Berlin Classics   Catalog: 13452 Release Date: 10/27/2008   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Claude Debussy,  Maurice Ravel
    Performer:  Cécile Ousset
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  • 64.
    Edition Klavier-festival Ruhr - Portraits Vol 3
    Label: Cavi Music   Catalog: 8553088 Release Date: 10/14/2008   Number of Discs: 9
    Composer:  Frédéric Chopin,  Franz Schubert,  Maurice Ravel,  Claude Debussy  ... 
    Performer:  Francesco Piemontesi,  Gwilym Simcock,  Mirjana Rajic,  Irwin Gage
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  • 65.
    Martha Argerich - The Collection 1 - The Solo Recordings
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 001190702 Release Date: 09/30/2008   Number of Discs: 8
    Composer:  Frédéric Chopin,  Johannes Brahms,  Sergei Prokofiev,  Maurice Ravel  ... 
    Performer:  Martha Argerich
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  • 66.
    Michael Studer - The Legacy
    Label: Claves   Catalog: 2713/18 Release Date: 08/12/2008   Number of Discs: 6
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Franz Joseph Haydn,  Camille Saint-Saëns,  Frédéric Chopin  ... 
    Performer:  Michael Studer
    Conductor:  Fritz Rieger,  Wolfgang Sawallisch,  Helmut Müller-Brühl,  Tibor Varga
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Lausanne Chamber Orchestra,  Suisse Romande Orchestra,  Cologne Chamber Orchestra  ... 
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  • 67.
    Label: Musicaphon   Catalog: 56904 Release Date: 07/29/2008   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Robert Schumann,  Franz Liszt,  Frédéric Chopin,  Alexander Scriabin  ... 
    Performer:  Heidrun Holtmann
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  • 68.
    Enchanting Ravel / Andrea Anderson
    Label: Klavier Records   Catalog: 11016 Release Date: 06/16/2008   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Maurice Ravel
    Performer:  Andrea Anderson
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  • 69.
    Mussorgsky: Pictures From An Exhibition;  Ravel, Balakirev / Freddy Kempf
    Label: Bis   Catalog: 1580 Release Date: 05/27/2008   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Modest Mussorgsky,  Maurice Ravel,  Mily Balakirev
    Performer:  Freddy Kempf
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  • 70.
    Jorge Luis Prats In Recital
    Label: Video Artists International   Catalog: 4414 Release Date: 10/23/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Moritz Moszkowski,  Ernesto Lecuona,  Ignacio Cervantes,  Maurice Ravel  ... 
    Performer:  Jorge Luis Prats
    DVD: $28.99
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  • 71.
    Mussorgsky: Pictures At An Exhibition;  Ravel: Gaspard
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 49886 Release Date: 08/06/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Maurice Ravel,  Modest Mussorgsky
    Performer:  Alexander Toradze
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  • 72.
    Chopin, Debussy, Ravel / Vladimir Ashkenazy
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 000897302 Release Date: 07/10/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Frédéric Chopin,  Claude Debussy,  Maurice Ravel
    Performer:  Vladimir Ashkenazy
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  • 73.
    Ravel: Gaspard De La Nuit, Etc / Barto, Et Al
    Label: Ondine   Catalog: 1095 Release Date: 04/10/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Maurice Ravel
    Performer:  Tzimon Barto
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  • 74.
    Leonard Pennario - The Early Years 1950-1958
    Label: Msr   Catalog: 1188 Release Date: 11/26/2006   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  Frédéric Chopin,  Robert Schumann,  Franz Liszt,  César Franck  ... 
    Performer:  Leonard Pennario
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  • 75.
    Moussorgsky: Pictures At An Exhibition;  Ravel / Saarinen
    Label: Doremi Records   Catalog: 71150 Release Date: 11/14/2006   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Maurice Ravel,  Modest Mussorgsky
    Performer:  Gloria Saarinen
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1 2 3 4 5

Maurice Ravel


WORKS
I. Prélude à la nuit
II. Malagueña
III. Habanera
IV. Feria
Ravel: Piano Concerto In G, M. 83 - 1. Allegramente
Ravel: Piano Concerto In G, M. 83 - 2. Adagio assai
Ravel: Piano Concerto In G, M. 83 - 3. Presto
Ravel: Daphnis et Chloé, Suite No.2 - 1. Lever du jour [Daphnis et Chloë, Suite No.2]
Ravel: Daphnis et Chloé, Suite No.2 - 2. Pantomime [Daphnis et Chloë, Suite No.2]
Ravel: Daphnis et Chloé, Suite No.2 - 3. Danse générale [Daphnis et Chloë, Suite No.2]
1. Prélude
2. Fugue
3. Forlane
4. Rigaudon
5. Menuet
6. Toccata
Ravel: Valses nobles et sentimentales - for Orchestra - 1. Modéré; 2. Assez lent
Ravel: Valses nobles et sentimentales - for Orchestra - 3. Modéré; 4. Assez animé
Ravel: Valses nobles et sentimentales - for Orchestra - 5. Presque lent; 6. Assez vif
Ravel: Valses nobles et sentimentales - for Orchestra - 7. Moins vif; 8. Epilogue
Ravel: Gaspard de la nuit, M.55 - Ondine
Ravel: Gaspard de la nuit, M.55 - Le gibet
Ravel: Gaspard de la nuit, M.55 - Scarbo
1. Allegro moderato. Très doux
2. Assez vif. Très rythmé
3. Très lent
4. Vif et agité