Le tombeau de Couperin
Le Tombeau de Couperin is a suite for solo piano by Maurice Ravel, composed between 1914 and 1917, in six movements based on those of a traditional Baroque suite. Each movement is dedicated to the memory of a friend of the composer who had died fighting in World War I. Ravel produced an orchestral version of the work in 1919, although this omitted two of the original movements. Tombeau in the title is a musical term popular from the 17th century meaning "a piece written as a memorial"; the specific Couperin, among a family noted as musicians for about two centuries, that Ravel intended to evoke is thought to be François Couperin "the Great". Ravel stated that his intention was to pay homage more to the sensibilities of the Baroque French keyboard suite not to imitate or pay tribute to Couperin himself in particular; this is reflected in the structure. As a preparatory exercise, Ravel had transcribed a forlane from the fourth suite of Couperin's Concerts royaux, this piece invokes Ravel's Forlane structurally.
The other movements are based on Baroque forms, with the Toccata taking the form of a perpetuum mobile reminiscent of Alessandro Scarlatti. Ravel revives Baroque practices through his distinctive use of ornamentation and modal harmony. Neoclassicism shines through with Ravel's pointedly twentieth-century chromatic melody and piquant harmonies in the dissonant Forlane. Written after the death of Ravel's mother in 1917 and of friends in the First World War, Le Tombeau de Couperin is a light-hearted, sometimes reflective work rather than a sombre one which Ravel explained in response to criticism saying: "The dead are sad enough, in their eternal silence."The first performance of the original piano version was given on 11 April 1919 by Marguerite Long, Joseph de Marliave's widow, in the Salle Gaveau in Paris. The movements are as follows: In 1919 Ravel orchestrated four movements of the work; the orchestral version clarifies the harmonic language of the suite and brings sharpness to its classical dance rhythms.
The orchestrated version is scored for two flutes, two oboes, two clarinets, two bassoons, two horns, trumpet and strings. Only a few years after Ravel's own orchestration, Lucien Garban produced a version of the piece for'small orchestra' with a piano-conductor, consisting of the Prélude and Rigaudon, he had transcribed the full suite for piano four hands in 1919. Several other composers have since created orchestrations of those two movements which Ravel omitted, the Fugue and the Toccata. David Diamond has orchestrated the second movement Fugue, while the Hungarian pianist and conductor Zoltán Kocsis has produced his own version of both the Fugue and the Toccata. However, the Toccata, scored for a large orchestra, goes far beyond the limits of Ravel's own, small orchestra, the Fugue is set for winds only. Another instrumentation of Fugue and Toccata by pianist Michael Round was recorded by Vladimir Ashkenazy: the score is published by Edwin F. Kalmus. Round's version of the Toccata adds percussion.
Kalmus omitted the percussion parts from the published score so as to match the orchestration of the rest of the suite, but these parts are available separately, directly from the orchestrator. In 2013 the British composer Kenneth Hesketh orchestrated the Fugue and Toccata for the exact orchestration of the original four-movement orchestral suite; the first performance was given by the Goettingen Symphony Orchestra conducted by Christoph-Mathias Mueller. The scores are available from London. Four movements have been arranged for wind quintet by American horn player Mason Jones. Danish composer Hans Abrahamsen has transcribed four movements for wind quintet. and further American composer Gunther Schuller has made a wind-quintet arrangement. In 2013, Trevor P. Wagler re-arranged the orchestral version of four movements down to a quintet, played at Wilfrid Laurier University; the four orchestral movements were arranged by Elena González Arias for oboe and piano in 2014. Listen to Le Tombeau de Couperin.
Free complete recording at the Piano Society. Le Tombeau de Couperin: Scores at the International Music Score Library Project Le Tombeau de Couperin at Maurice Ravel Frontispice Listen to Toccata from Le Tombeau de Couperin orchestrated by Kenneth Hesketh. Youtube: Orchestration of the Fugue and Toccata by Jack M. Jarrett, 1982, accessed 6 January 2010 Youtube: Orchestral version, played in 2003 by Pierre Boulez & Berlin Philharmonic, accessed 23 August 2015 Youtube: Jazz arrangement of the Prelude played in 2010 by Tamir Hendelman, Marco Panascia, Lewis Nash, accessed 11 December 2010
Boléro is a one-movement orchestral piece by the French composer Maurice Ravel. Composed as a ballet commissioned by Russian actress and dancer Ida Rubinstein, the piece, which premiered in 1928, is Ravel's most famous musical composition. Before Boléro, Ravel had composed large-scale ballets, suites for the ballet, one-movement dance pieces. Apart from such compositions intended for a staged dance performance, Ravel had demonstrated an interest in composing re-styled dances, from his earliest successes—the 1895 Menuet and the 1899 Pavane—to his more mature works like Le tombeau de Couperin, which takes the format of a dance suite. Boléro epitomizes Ravel's preoccupation with reinventing dance movements, it was one of the last pieces he composed before illness forced him into retirement. The two piano concertos and the song cycle Don Quichotte à Dulcinée were the only completed compositions that followed Boléro; the work had its genesis in a commission from the dancer Ida Rubinstein, who asked Ravel to make an orchestral transcription of six pieces from Isaac Albéniz's set of piano pieces, Iberia.
While working on the transcription, Ravel was informed that the movements had been orchestrated by Spanish conductor Enrique Fernández Arbós, that copyright law prevented any other arrangement from being made. When Arbós heard of this, he said he would waive his rights and allow Ravel to orchestrate the pieces. However, Ravel changed his mind and decided to orchestrate one of his own works, he changed his mind again and decided to write a new piece based on the musical form and Spanish dance called bolero. While on vacation at St Jean-de-Luz, Ravel went to the piano and played a melody with one finger to his friend Gustave Samazeuilh, saying "Don't you think this theme has an insistent quality? I'm going to try and repeat it a number of times without any development increasing the orchestra as best I can." It is possible that this unusual interest in repetition was caused by the onset of progressive aphasia. The piece was called Fandango, but its title was soon changed to "Boléro"; the composition was a sensational success when it was premiered at the Paris Opéra on 22 November 1928, with choreography by Bronislava Nijinska and designs and scenario by Alexandre Benois.
The orchestra of the Opéra was conducted by Walther Straram. Ernest Ansermet had been engaged to conduct during the entire ballet season, but the musicians refused to play under him. A scenario by Rubinstein and Nijinska was printed in the program for the premiere: Inside a tavern in Spain, people dance beneath the brass lamp hung from the ceiling. To the cheers to join in, the female dancer has leapt onto the long table and her steps become more and more animated. Ravel himself, had a different conception of the work: his preferred stage design was of an open-air setting with a factory in the background, reflecting the mechanical nature of the music. Boléro became Ravel's most famous composition, much to the surprise of the composer, who had predicted that most orchestras would refuse to play it, it is played as a purely orchestral work, only being staged as a ballet. According to a apocryphal story from the premiere performance, a woman was heard shouting that Ravel was mad; when told about this, Ravel is said to have remarked.
The piece was first published by the Parisian firm Durand in 1929. Arrangements of the piece were made for piano solo and piano duet, Ravel himself arranged a version for two pianos, published in 1930; the first recording was made by Piero Coppolain Paris for the Gramophone Company on 8 January 1930. The recording session was attended by Ravel; the following day, Ravel conducted the Lamoureux Orchestra in his own recording for Polydor. That same year, further recordings were made by Serge Koussevitzky with the Boston Symphony Orchestra and Willem Mengelberg with the Concertgebouw Orchestra. Conductor Arturo Toscanini gave the American premiere of Boléro with the New York Philharmonic on 14 November 1929; the performance was a great success, bringing "shouts and cheers from the audience" according to a New York Times review, leading one critic to declare that "it was Toscanini who launched the career of the Boléro", another to claim that Toscanini had made Ravel into "almost an American national hero".
On 4 May 1930, Toscanini performed the work with the New York Philharmonic at the Paris Opéra as part of that orchestra's European tour. Toscanini's tempo was faster than Ravel preferred, Ravel signaled his disapproval by refusing to respond to Toscanini's gesture during the audience ovation. An exchange took place between the two men backstage after the concert. According to one account, Ravel said, "It's too fast", to which Toscanini responded, "You don't know anything about your own music. It's the only way to save the work". According to another report, Ravel said, "That's not my tempo". Toscanini replied, "When I play it at your tempo, it is not effective", to which Ravel retorted, "Then do not play it". Four months Ravel attempted to smooth over relations with Toscanini by sending him a note explaining that "I have always felt that if a composer does not take part in the performance of a work, he must avoid the ovations" and, ten days inviting Toscanini to conduct the premiere of his Piano Concerto for the Left Hand, an invitation, declined
The piano is an acoustic, stringed musical instrument invented in Italy by Bartolomeo Cristofori around the year 1700, in which the strings are struck by hammers. It is played using a keyboard, a row of keys that the performer presses down or strikes with the fingers and thumbs of both hands to cause the hammers to strike the strings; the word piano is a shortened form of pianoforte, the Italian term for the early 1700s versions of the instrument, which in turn derives from gravicembalo col piano e forte and fortepiano. The Italian musical terms piano and forte indicate "soft" and "loud" in this context referring to the variations in volume produced in response to a pianist's touch or pressure on the keys: the greater the velocity of a key press, the greater the force of the hammer hitting the strings, the louder the sound of the note produced and the stronger the attack; the name was created as a contrast to harpsichord, a musical instrument that doesn't allow variation in volume. The first fortepianos in the 1700s had smaller dynamic range.
An acoustic piano has a protective wooden case surrounding the soundboard and metal strings, which are strung under great tension on a heavy metal frame. Pressing one or more keys on the piano's keyboard causes a padded hammer to strike the strings; the hammer rebounds from the strings, the strings continue to vibrate at their resonant frequency. These vibrations are transmitted through a bridge to a soundboard that amplifies by more efficiently coupling the acoustic energy to the air; when the key is released, a damper stops the strings' vibration, ending the sound. Notes can be sustained when the keys are released by the fingers and thumbs, by the use of pedals at the base of the instrument; the sustain pedal enables pianists to play musical passages that would otherwise be impossible, such as sounding a 10-note chord in the lower register and while this chord is being continued with the sustain pedal, shifting both hands to the treble range to play a melody and arpeggios over the top of this sustained chord.
Unlike the pipe organ and harpsichord, two major keyboard instruments used before the piano, the piano allows gradations of volume and tone according to how forcefully a performer presses or strikes the keys. Most modern pianos have a row of 88 black and white keys, 52 white keys for the notes of the C major scale and 36 shorter black keys, which are raised above the white keys, set further back on the keyboard; this means that the piano can play 88 different pitches, going from the deepest bass range to the highest treble. The black keys are for the "accidentals". More some pianos have additional keys. Most notes have three strings, except for the bass; the strings are sounded when keys are pressed or struck, silenced by dampers when the hands are lifted from the keyboard. Although an acoustic piano has strings, it is classified as a percussion instrument rather than as a stringed instrument, because the strings are struck rather than plucked. There are two main types of piano: the upright piano.
The grand piano is used for Classical solos, chamber music, art song, it is used in jazz and pop concerts. The upright piano, more compact, is the most popular type, as it is a better size for use in private homes for domestic music-making and practice. During the 1800s, influenced by the musical trends of the Romantic music era, innovations such as the cast iron frame and aliquot stringing gave grand pianos a more powerful sound, with a longer sustain and richer tone. In the nineteenth century, a family's piano played the same role that a radio or phonograph played in the twentieth century. During the nineteenth century, music publishers produced many musical works in arrangements for piano, so that music lovers could play and hear the popular pieces of the day in their home; the piano is employed in classical, jazz and popular music for solo and ensemble performances and for composing and rehearsals. Although the piano is heavy and thus not portable and is expensive, its musical versatility, the large number of musicians and amateurs trained in playing it, its wide availability in performance venues and rehearsal spaces have made it one of the Western world's most familiar musical instruments.
With technological advances, amplified electric pianos, electronic pianos, digital pianos have been developed. The electric piano became a popular instrument in the 1960s and 1970s genres of jazz fusion, funk music and rock music; the piano was founded on earlier technological innovations in keyboard instruments. Pipe organs have been used since Antiquity, as such, the development of pipe organs enabled instrument builders to learn about creating keyboard mechanisms for sounding pitches; the first string instruments with struck strings were the hammered dul
Pierre-Joseph Ravel was a Swiss civil engineer and inventor, father of the composer Maurice Ravel. He was a pioneer of the automobile industry, he invented and drove a steam-powered automobile in the late 1860s, developed an acetylene-powered two-stroke engine, built a racing car that could achieve speeds of up to 6 kilometres per hour and built a vehicle that could perform a somersault. Pierre-Joseph Ravel was born in Versoix, Canton of Geneva, Switzerland in 1832, his father, Aimé Ravel, was born in Collonges-sous-Salève in France. He moved to Versoix where he worked as a baker, became a Swiss citizen in 1834 through marriage to a young Swiss girl, Caroline Grosfort, they had five children – Pierre-Joseph, Alexandrine and Edouard. The youngest, Edouard Ravel, became a talented painter. Pierre Joseph was interested in music as a child. Pierre-Joseph Ravel became a civil engineer. After completing his engineering studies, he directed construction of the railway line from Madrid to Irun in Spain.
He had moved to Paris by 1868. On 2 September 1868 he obtained a patent for a "steam generator heated by oil, applied to locomotion". Afterwards he invented a supercharged two-stroke engine. Ravel drove his steam-driven automobile for short trips in the industrial areas around Paris just before the Franco-Prussian War of 1870. During the war the shed where the machine was stored was buried under the fortifications built for the defense of Paris, Ravel was ruined. Soon after the war he again became involved in railroad construction in Spain. Ravel met Marie Delouart, in Aranjuez, near Madrid, she was from a Basque background. They married in Paris on 3 April 1873. Both of them were Catholics, their first son, Joseph-Maurice Ravel, was born on 7 March 1875 in the village of Ciboure in Basque country just north of the Spanish border. Three months the Ravel family moved back to Paris; the family encouraged Maurice Ravel in his career in music. Their second son, Edouard Ravel was born in Paris. Edouard became an engineer.
In 1880 Joseph Ravel built an acetylene-powered two-stroke engine. He abandoned the design after a series of accidents culminated in a huge explosion. In 1897 Joseph and Edouard Ravel made a new two-stroke engine. In 1905 they filed a patent for a system, they went on to build the "vortex of death". The show was taken to the US and presented by the Barnum and Bailey circus until the car missed its soft landing and crashed, killing the driver; some time after the Ravels invented a circular water track with an artificial current, ancestor of the modern jacuzzi, which let a swimmer train without needing an Olympic-size pool. Ravel's other inventions included a machine for sewing paper bags, a type of machine gun and an car which he drove on Swiss roads at up to 6 kilometres per hour. Ravel suffered from a brain hemorrhage, in August 1906 went with his son Maurice to recover in Hermance, at the end of Lake Geneva. Pierre-Joseph Ravel died in 1908
Franz Liszt was a Hungarian composer, virtuoso pianist, music teacher and organist of the Romantic era. He was a writer, a philanthropist, a Hungarian nationalist and a Franciscan tertiary. Liszt gained renown in Europe during the early nineteenth century for his prodigious virtuosic skill as a pianist, he was a friend, musical promoter and benefactor to many composers of his time, including Frédéric Chopin, Richard Wagner, Hector Berlioz, Robert Schumann, Camille Saint-Saëns, Edvard Grieg, Ole Bull, Joachim Raff, Mikhail Glinka, Alexander Borodin. A prolific composer, Liszt was one of the most prominent representatives of the New German School, he left behind an extensive and diverse body of work which influenced his forward-looking contemporaries and anticipated 20th-century ideas and trends. Among Liszt's musical contributions were the symphonic poem, developing thematic transformation as part of his experiments in musical form, radical innovations in harmony. Franz Liszt was born to Anna Liszt and Adam Liszt on 22 October 1811, in the village of Doborján in Sopron County, in the Kingdom of Hungary, Austrian Empire.
Liszt's father played the piano, violin and guitar. He had been in the service of Prince Nikolaus II Esterházy and knew Haydn and Beethoven personally. At age six, Franz began listening attentively to his father's piano playing. Adam began teaching him the piano at age seven, Franz began composing in an elementary manner when he was eight, he appeared in concerts at Sopron and Pressburg in October and November 1820 at age 9. After the concerts, a group of wealthy sponsors offered to finance Franz's musical education in Vienna. There Liszt received piano lessons from Carl Czerny, who in his own youth had been a student of Beethoven and Hummel, he received lessons in composition from Ferdinando Paer and Antonio Salieri, the music director of the Viennese court. Liszt's public debut in Vienna on December 1, 1822, at a concert at the "Landständischer Saal", was a great success, he was greeted in Austrian and Hungarian aristocratic circles and met Beethoven and Schubert. In spring 1823, when his one-year leave of absence came to an end, Adam Liszt asked Prince Esterházy in vain for two more years.
Adam Liszt therefore took his leave of the Prince's services. At the end of April 1823, the family returned to Hungary for the last time. At the end of May 1823, the family went to Vienna again. Towards the end of 1823 or early 1824, Liszt's first composition to be published, his Variation on a Waltz by Diabelli, appeared as Variation 24 in Part II of Vaterländischer Künstlerverein; this anthology, commissioned by Anton Diabelli, includes 50 variations on his waltz by 50 different composers, Part I being taken up by Beethoven's 33 variations on the same theme, which are now separately better known as his Diabelli Variations, Op. 120. Liszt's inclusion in the Diabelli project—he was described in it as "an 11 year old boy, born in Hungary"—was certainly at the instigation of Czerny, his teacher and a participant. Liszt was the only child composer in the anthology. After his father's death in 1827, Liszt moved to Paris, he gave up touring. To earn money, Liszt gave lessons in piano playing and composition from early morning until late at night.
His students were scattered across the city and he had to cover long distances. Because of this, he kept uncertain hours and took up smoking and drinking—all habits he would continue throughout his life; the following year, he fell in love with one of his pupils, Caroline de Saint-Cricq, the daughter of Charles X's minister of commerce, Pierre de Saint-Cricq. Her father, insisted that the affair be broken off. Liszt fell ill, to the extent that an obituary notice was printed in a Paris newspaper, he underwent a long period of religious doubts and pessimism, he again was dissuaded this time by his mother. He had many discussions with the Abbé de Lamennais, who acted as his spiritual father, with Chrétien Urhan, a German-born violinist who introduced him to the Saint-Simonists. Urhan wrote music, anti-classical and subjective, with titles such as Elle et moi, La Salvation angélique and Les Regrets, may have whetted the young Liszt's taste for musical romanticism. Important for Liszt was Urhan's earnest championship of Schubert, which may have stimulated his own lifelong devotion to that composer's music.
During this period, Liszt read to overcome his lack of a general education, he soon came into contact with many of the leading authors and artists of his day, including Victor Hugo, Alphonse de Lamartine and Heinrich Heine. He composed nothing in these years; the July Revolution of 1830 inspired him to sketch a Revolutionary Symphony based on the events of the "three glorious days," and he took a greater interest in events surrounding him. He met Hector Berlioz on December 1830, the day before the premiere of the Symphonie fantastique. Berlioz's music made a strong impression on Liszt later when he was writing for orchestra, he inherited from Berlioz the diabolic quality of many of his works. After attending a charity concert on 20 April 1832, for the victims of a Parisian cholera epidemic, organised by Niccolò Paganini, Liszt became determined to become as great a virtuoso on the piano as Paganini was on the violin. Paris in the 1830s had become the nexus
Piano Concerto for the Left Hand (Ravel)
The Piano Concerto for the Left Hand in D major was composed by Maurice Ravel between 1929 and 1930, concurrently with his Piano Concerto in G. It was commissioned by the Austrian pianist Paul Wittgenstein, who lost his right arm during World War I; the Concerto had its premiere in January 1932, with Wittgenstein as soloist performing with the Vienna Symphony Orchestra. The piece was commissioned by Paul Wittgenstein, a concert pianist who had lost his right arm in the First World War. In preparing for composition, Ravel studied several pieces written for one-handed piano, including Camille Saint-Saëns's Six Études pour la main gauche, Leopold Godowsky's transcription for the left hand of Frédéric Chopin's Etudes, Carl Czerny's Ecole de la main gauche, 24 études pour la main gauche, Charles-Valentin Alkan's, Alexander Scriabin's Prelude and Nocturne for the Left Hand. Wittgenstein gave the premiere with Robert Heger and the Vienna Symphony Orchestra on 5 January 1932; the first French pianist to perform the work was Jacques Février, chosen by Ravel.
Ravel is quoted in one source as saying that the piece is in only one movement and in another as saying the piece is divided into two movements linked together. According to Marie-Noëlle Masson, the piece has a tripartite structure: slow–fast–slow, instead of the usual fast–slow–fast. Whatever the internal structure may be, the 18–19 minute piece negotiates several sections in various tempi and keys without pause. Towards the end of the piece, some of the music of the early slow sections is overlaid with the faster music, so that two tempi occur simultaneously; the concerto begins with the double basses arpeggiating an ambiguous harmony being the background to an unusual solo of the contrabassoon. Although these notes are given great structural weight, they are the four open strings on the double bass, creating the illusion at the start that the orchestra is still tuning up; as is traditional in a concerto, the thematic material is presented first in the orchestra and echoed by the piano. Not so traditional is the dramatic piano cadenza which first introduces the soloist and prefigures the piano's statement of the opening material.
This material includes both a B theme, though the B theme receives little exposure. An additional theme introduced at the beginning exhibits several similarities to the Dies Irae chant. An excerpt from the faster section, sometimes referenced as the scherzo, is shown in the following example. Throughout the piece, Ravel creates ambiguity between duple rhythms; this example highlights one of the more notable instances of this. The concerto is scored for a large orchestra consisting of piccolo, 2 flutes, 2 oboes, English horn, piccolo clarinet, 2 clarinets, bass clarinet, 2 bassoons, contrabassoon, 4 horns, 3 trumpets, 3 trombones, timpani, snare drum, bass drum, wood block, tam-tam, harp and the solo piano. Although at first Wittgenstein did not take to its jazz-influenced rhythms and harmonies, he grew to like the piece. Ravel's other concerto, the Piano Concerto in G, is more known and played; when Ravel first heard Wittgenstein play the concerto at a private concert in the French embassy in Vienna, he was furious.'He heard lines taken from the orchestral part and added to the solo, harmonies changed, parts added, bars cut and at the end a newly created series of great swirling arpeggios in the final cadenza.
The composer was beside himself with indignation and disbelief.' Wittgenstein agreed to perform the concerto as written, the two men patched up their differences,'but the whole episode left a bitter taste in both their mouths'. In May 1930 Ravel had had a major disagreement with Arturo Toscanini over the correct tempo for Boléro. In September, Ravel patched up the relationship and invited Toscanini to conduct the world premiere of the Piano Concerto for the Left Hand, but the conductor declined. Before the premiere, in 1931 Alfred Cortot made an arrangement for piano two-hands and orchestra. Cortot ignored this and played his arrangement, which caused Ravel to write to many conductors imploring them not to engage Cortot to play his concerto. After Ravel's death in 1937, Cortot resumed playing his arrangement, recorded it with Charles Munch leading the Paris Conservatoire Orchestra. American composer Stephen Sondheim wrote a senior paper in college on the piece; the piece is featured prominently in "Morale Victory," an episode from the 8th season of the long-running American television series M*A*S*H.
Major Charles Winchester uses it and Wittgenstein's story to convince a drafted concert pianist, whose right hand has been permanently injured in combat, not to give up his musical gift despite his wounds. Lewis, Cary; the Piano Concertos of Ravel. North Texas State University. OCLC 42709867. Retrieved 24 April 2017. Piano Concerto for the Left Hand: Scores at the International Music Score Library Project
Don Quichotte à Dulcinée
Don Quichotte à Dulcinée is a song cycle by Maurice Ravel based on the story of Don Quixote. It was first composed for voice and piano but orchestrated; the songs are traditionally performed by a bass. The cycle is made up of three independent pieces: Chanson Romanesque, Chanson épique, Chanson à boire; the text was written by the librettist Paul Morand. It was composed between the years of 1932 and 1933; this was the last of Maurice Ravel's compositions, commissioned by the celebrated film director G. W. Pabst for a cinema version of Don Quixote starring the legendary bass Fyodor Chaliapin; the score was to include four songs along with background music for several episodes. As Ravel worked on the project in 1932, however, he suffered the disabling effects of Pick’s disease, a cerebral-neurological condition that robbed him of motor skills and memory while afflicting him with periods of aphasia. How much Pabst knew about Ravel’s illness is unclear. In fact, Pabst had commissioned several composers, so that he could choose at will.
When the film, completed in 1933, reached theaters with Ibert's music, Ravel sued the producers, but never obtained a judgement. In the end, Ravel wrote only three songs, both in orchestrated versions, he completed them in 1933 thanks to extensive secretarial help provided by assistants. The first public performance, given by baritone Martial Singher in December 1934 at the Théâtre du Châtelet in Paris, featured the orchestral version, with an ensemble conducted by Paul Paray. For the lusty opening "Chanson Romanesque", Ravel chose the quajira dance-pattern, exploiting the quirks of its alternating 68 and 34 meters for word-painting, enlivening it by sometimes garnishing the 34 with a clashing dissonance. Sensuality subtly increases with a turn to the major, the final rhapsodizing on the beloved deepens the emotional perspective of all that has gone before. Parallel harmonies create the atmosphere of medieval Christian liturgy in the prayer of "Chanson épique." Here the oft-reiterated asymmetrical dance-rhythm of the zortzico imparts a sustained urgency unusual in slow music.
Against the manic jota that dominates the "Chanson à boire", a tipsy Don Quixote revels in flamenco vocalizing and unleashes peals of laughter as keyboard flourishes suggest the bubbling and sparkling of wine. Chanson Romanesque Si vous me disiez que la Terre A tant tourner vous offensa, Je lui dépêcherais Pança: Vous la verriez fixe et se taire. Si vous me disiez que l'ennui Vous vient du ciel trop fleuri d'astres, Déchirant les divins cadastres, Je faucherais d'un coup la nuit. Si vous me disiez que l'espace Ainsi vidé ne vous plaît point, Chevalier Dieu, la lance au poing, J'étoilerais le vent qui passe. Mais si vous disiez que mon sang Est plus à moi qu'à vous ma Dame, Je blêmirais dessous le blâme Et je mourrais vous bénissant. Ô Dulcinée... Chanson épique Bon Saint Michel qui me donnez loisir De voir ma Dame et de l’entendre, Bon Saint Michel qui me daignez choisir Pour lui complaire et la défendre, Bon Saint Michel veuillez descendre Avec Saint Georges sur l’autel De la Madone au bleu mantel.
D’un rayon du ciel bénissez ma lame Et son égale en pureté Et son égale en piété Comme en pudeur et chasteté: Ma Dame. Ô grands Saint Georges et Saint Michel, L’ange qui veille sur ma veille, Ma douce Dame si pareille A Vous, Madone au bleu mantel! Amen. Chanson à boire Foin du bâtard, illustre Dame, Qui pour me perdre à vos doux yeux Dit que l'amour et le vin vieux Mettent en deuil mon cœur, mon âme! Je bois à la joie! La joie est le seul but Où je vais droit... Lorsque j'ai bu! A la joie, à la joie! Je bois à la joie! Foin du jaloux, brune maîtresse, Qui geint, qui pleure et fait serment D’être toujours ce pâle amant Qui met de l'eau dans son ivresse