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Maurice Ravel

The French composer Maurice Ravel was born at Ciboure in the Basses Pyrénées on 7 March 1875 and died in his early sixties in Paris on 28 December 1937. As a composer he was a perfectionist but not always perceived as such. His piano writing was markedly individual, especially with texture, and his orchestral scoring enshrined a striking lucidity that emphasised differing degrees of light and shade.

Misleadingly compared to Debussy, his style and ethos is quite different, his music more refined. He is best remembered for his finest works like the ballet Daphnis et Chloe; and best forgotten for his sake is the Bolero.

A selection of M&V articles about Maurice Ravel

Certainly Nimble - Mike Wheeler listens to pianist Antony Peebles

Ensemble. Celebratory and Ambiguous - Mozart, Judith Weir and Ravel from the Lawson Trio at Buxton, heard by Mike Wheeler

Ensemble. Orchestral Showpieces - Cristian Mandeal conducts the Hallé Orchestra, heard by Mike Wheeler

Beautifully Spun - Steven Osborne's Prokofiev, Ravel and Rachmaninov impress Keith Bramich

Ensemble. Vivid and Entertaining - Giuseppe Pennisi attends a Ravel double bill in Rome

DVD Spotlight. Fluid and Magical - Ravel's operas, reviewed by Howard Smith. '... these concise aesthetic works stand out on DVD ...'

Crisp Articulation - Mike Wheeler listens to Israeli pianist Ishay Shaer

Ensemble. A Runaway Success - Juanjo Mena and the BBC Philharmonic impress Mike Wheeler

Ensemble. Thanksgiving and Transcendence - Giuseppe Pennisi listens to orchestral and chamber concerts at the Salzburg Summer Festival

Ensemble. Beautifully Judged - Ravel for piano duet, heard by Mike Wheeler

Ensemble. Beautifully Captured - Mike Wheeler listens to the Mavron Quartet

CD Spotlight. European Impressionism - Quartets by Ravel, Debussy and Saint-Saëns, heard by Howard Smith. '[Quatuor Modigliani] attack it with some vehemence.'

An Invaluable Book - Gergely Hubai's 'Torn Music: Rejected film scores, a selected history', recommended by Patric Standford

CD Spotlight. Picturesque Allure - Maurice Ravel's orchestral music, heard by Howard Smith. '... gently hypnotic ...'

CD Spotlight. Dazzling Tracks - Dinu Lipatti, heard by Joanne Chang. '... skillfully and brilliantly carried out.'

CD Spotlight. Communicative Aplomb - Joseph Rackers' debut recording, heard by Howard Smith. '"Eureka" moments ... are conspicuous by their absence.'

Ensemble. Informative and Exhilarating - Chamber and instrumental music from China and elsewhere, heard by Maria Nockin

CD Spotlight. Irridescent Colourings - The Debussy Ensemble, enjoyed by Bill Newman. '... beautifully balanced ...'

Ensemble. Finely Judged - Chinese pianist Di Xiao, heard by Mike Wheeler

CD Spotlight. Wondrous Music - Cuarteto Casals, heard by Robert Anderson. '... impeccable ensemble, just intonation, a rich variety of tone colours, and a youthful freshness of approach.'

Ensemble. Reaching Out - Mendelssohn, Mozart, Berlioz and Ravel from James Feddeck and the Cleveland Orchestra, heard by Suzanne Torrey

Ensemble. Angels and Demons - Giuseppe Pennisi visits Sagra Musicale Umbra 2012

CD Spotlight. Sensuously Crafted - Songs by Maurice Ravel, heard by Robert Anderson. '... skilled and dedicated artists ...'

Ensemble. The Finest of Them All - The 2012 Hereford Three Choirs Festival, reviewed by Roderic Dunnett

Delicacy and Clarity - Bill Newman listens to young Chinese pianist Jianing Kong

CD Spotlight. Avowedly Definitive - John McCabe plays his own 'Tenebrae', heard by Howard Smith. '... imbued with anger and monumental in both structure and outlook ...'

Ensemble. Born to Excel - Recent concerts in London, heard by Bill Newman

CD Spotlight. Most Remarkable - Jamaican pianist Orrett Rhoden, heard by Bill Newman

Ensemble. Thoroughly Enjoyable - Mike Wheeler listens to the Richard Roddis Singers on tour

Ensemble. Very Moving - A recital by Janine Jansen and Itamar Golan, heard by Bill Newman

DVD Spotlight. Beyond Criticism - Paul Galbraith plays Mozart, Bach and Britten, recommended by Howard Smith. '... palpable, near-orchestral grandeur.'

Clarity of Expression - Yasmin Rowe plays for the Keyboard Charitable Trust, reviewed by Bill Newman

Ensemble. Beautifully Controlled - Mike Wheeler listens to Suk, Dvorák, Ravel and Debussy from the Hallé Orchestra in Nottingham

CD Spotlight. Full-blooded Performance - Music for violin and piano by Ravel and Lekeu, recommended by Robert Anderson. '... the whole recital has rare commitment and power.'

An Outstanding Evening - Bill Newman listens to American pianist Rorianne Schrade

Ensemble. Tremendously Exciting - The Dante Quartet at London's Wigmore Hall, reviewed by Bill Newman

CD Spotlight. Unaffected Restraint - Halida Dinova plays music that tells stories, heard by Howard Smith. '... a mesmerising interpreter ...'

CD Spotlight. Warmly Spontaneous - Ravel songs, heard by Gerald Fenech. '... utter conviction ...'

Ensemble. Musical Outlooks - Bill Newman attends a selection of concerts at London's Wigmore Hall

Ensemble. Unmissable Talents - An array of artists at London's Wigmore Hall, reviewed by Bill Newman

Ensemble. Richly Expressive - The Cleveland Orchestra begins its annual South Florida residency, by Lawrence Budmen

Ensemble. High Standards - Bill Newman listens to various artists at London's Wigmore Hall

CD Spotlight. A Magnificent Celebration - Three Rodrigo guitar concertos, enjoyed by Robert Anderson. 'Alfonso Moreno is a superb protagonist, technically impeccable ...'

New Year Blues - A roundup of recent London concerts by Bill Newman

Ensemble. Vibrant Performance - Two concerts by the Symphony of the Americas, reviewed by Lawrence Budmen

Ideally Matched - Malcolm Troup hears 'the art of the piano reborn' in Syrian pianist Riyad Nicolas

Timings - Breaking Moulds: 1910, by Jennifer Paull

Confidently Entertaining - A recital by John Paul Ekins delights Bill Newman

Ensemble. What does this symphony mean? - Shostakovich's 'Leningrad', heard by Giuseppe Pennisi

Liquid Finger-work - Mike Wheeler listens to a piano recital by Cordelia Williams

Ensemble. Superb Pianism - A London recital by Julian Jacobson, heard by Robert Anderson

A Golden Treasury - Havergal Brian on European and American music, read by Patric Standford

CD Spotlight. Vocal Colour - Simon Keenlyside sings Schubert, Wolf, Fauré and Ravel, heard by Robert Anderson. '... a wondrous variety ...'

Ensemble. Hugely Satisfying - As New Zealand arts funding strikes a sour note, Howard Smith listens to the Vector Wellington Orchestra

Ensemble. Performance to Cherish - Lawrence Budmen submits a further report from the Tanglewood Festival 2010

CD Spotlight. An Impressive Performance - Michael Ludwig plays music by John Corigliano, heard by Patric Standford. '... should not fail to entertain ...'

CD Spotlight. Glowing Performances - Music by Koechlin and Jongen, recommended by Howard Smith. '... a truly outstanding recital ...'

Ensemble. Great Fun - The Hallé Orchestra ends Nottingham's orchestral season, heard by Mike Wheeler

Ensemble. The Real Thing - Spanish music from the Hallé Orchestra, reviewed by Mike Wheeler

Ensemble. A Cross Section - Bill Newman comments on some recent concerts at London's Wigmore Hall

Ensemble. A Wide-ranging Discourse - Sinfonia Viva plays Beethoven, Anna Meredith, Nico Muhly, Ravel and Schumann, reviewed by Mike Wheeler

CD Spotlight. Powerful Beauty - Works by Fauré for Cello and Piano, recommended by George Balcombe. '... a profoundly moving sound ...'

Ensemble. Wilfully Distorted - Petrenko conducts the RLPO, reviewed by Mike Wheeler

CD Spotlight. A Spectral Atmosphere - Murray McLachlan plays music by Shostakovich and friends, recommended by Howard Smith. '... an outright triumph for the label and for McLachlan.'

Ensemble. A True Dynamo - Lawrence Budmen listens to French conductor Ludovic Morlot, in concert with Jennifer Koh and the New World Symphony

CD Spotlight. Sterling Playing - Wendy Warner's interpretations of Popper and Piatigorsky, heard by Howard Smith. '... sovereign music-making deserving of the highest accolades.'

Ensemble. Compelling Vocal Drama - Lawrence Budmen listens to Measha Brueggergosman and the New World Symphony

World-ranking Pianism - Malcolm Troup marvels anew at the artistry of Julian Jacobson

Ensemble. Crystalline Lightness - A Symphony of the Americas concert, reviewed by Lawrence Budmen

CD Spotlight. Effectively Performed - Music for violin, cello and piano, heard by Howard Smith. '... beautiful, technically accomplished playing ...'

CD Spotlight. Lyric Warmth - Jennifer Larmore sings Barber, Berlioz, Ravel and Britten, recommended by Howard Smith. '... a compelling disc ...'

Ensemble. Brisk Ebullience - Lawrence Budmen sends a second report from this summer's Tanglewood Festival

Ensemble. Alert Playing - A recital for oboe and harp, heard by Mike Wheeler

CD Spotlight. Chameleon Virtues - Barenboim conducts Gershwin, Bernstein, Ravel and Wagner, reviewed by Robert Anderson. '... the oddest assortment of music.'

Ensemble. Tonal Luxuriance - Lawrence Budmen reports from Tanglewood 2009

Ensemble. The Boys - Bill Newman was at Nettle and Markham's thirtieth anniversary recital

Ensemble. Especially Successful - Gillian Wills reports from the Australian Fesival of Chamber Music

Balancing Act - Beethoven in E flat, with Julian Jacobson and friends

Ensemble. Suite Brolga - Music of David Salisbury at the 2009 Australian Festival of Chamber Music, reported by Malcolm Tattersall

Ensemble. Compelling Performance - Members of Psappha at the Buxton Festival, reviewed by Mike Wheeler

Ensemble. A Dream-Travelogue of Intoxification - David Wilkins attends a concert at the Great Hall of the Moscow Conservatoire

Music for Musicians Only? - The public turns a deaf ear to improvised music. As for classical music, Jan Dahlstedt claims that having abandoned improvisation, classical music entered a sidetrack from which it has never escaped, thus badly stifling creative progress. If he is guilty of heresy or may have a point, read on and judge for yourself.

Ensemble. Exciting Results - A new partnership between Charles Dutoit and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, experienced by Mike Wheeler

CD Spotlight. Consistently Refined - Debussy transcriptions, reviewed by Howard Smith. '... these alternatives are never less than striking ...'

Ensemble. A Worthy Feast - Christopher White and Melanie Reinhard at London's Foundling Museum, enjoyed by Malcolm Miller

CD Spotlight. Sovereign Horn Territory - Music for horn and orchestra, recommended by Howard Smith. '... stunning breath control and consummate understanding ...'

Ensemble. Beautifully Handled - Haydn, Dvorák and Lawrie Rose from the Iuventus Quartet, heard by Mike Wheeler

Ensemble. Rousing Performance - Mendelssohn, Ravel, Larsen and Tchaikovsky in South Florida, reviewed by Lawrence Budmen

CD Spotlight. A Skilful Balance - The Icicle Creek Piano Trio, reviewed by Howard Smith. '... rhythmically brisk, considered performances ...'

CD Spotlight. Pride of Place - Piano music by Frank Bridge, praised by Howard Smith. 'A standing ovation for Mark Bebbington ...'

Record Box. Superb Performances - Ursula Oppens plays Elliott Carter, celebrated by Patric Standford

Committed and Tough - Malcolm Troup plays Bloch's Piano Sonata, appreciated by Julian Jacobson

Ensemble. A Real Barnburner - Another report from this summer's Tanglewood Festival, by Lawrence Budmen

Ensemble. Radiant Lyricism - Victoria Grigorieva and Ekaterina Lebedeva play Beethoven and Ravel, reviewed by Malcolm Miller

Ensemble. Wonderfully Inventive - Music and dance on the theme of creation, appreciated by Mike Wheeler

Unflagging Energy - Nicola Meecham plays Haydn, Schubert, Ravel, Prokofiev and Gershwin, reviewed by Mike Wheeler

Plenty of Atmosphere - A festive concert from the Derby Concert Orchestra, reviewed by Mike Wheeler

Julian Jacobson - No longer one of British music's best-kept secrets! As reported by Malcolm Troup

Musical Adaptability - Down under with the Wellington Orchestra, by Howard Smith

Musical Insight - Two piano recitals in Brisbane, reviewed by Gillian Wills

Record Box. Beautifully Subtle - Cuarteto Casals plays Ravel, Turina and Toldrá, reviewed by Patric Standford

Ensemble. Flying Dutchmen - More from Bantry House, West Cork, Ireland, with Kelly Ferjutz

Ensemble. Companion Pieces - A Ravel / Puccini double bill, reviewed by Robert Hugill

Ensemble. Wondrous Colours - Alessio Bax and Lucille Chung play Schubert, Ravel and Stravinsky, reviewed by Bill Newman

Ensemble. Much to Enjoy - A concert by the Philharmonia of the Nations, reviewed by Mike Wheeler

Ensemble. Magnificent Performance - More reviews from London's Wigmore Hall, from Bill Newman

Ensemble. A Valentine Extravaganza - Julian Jacobson in the first of his orchestral Valentine Extravaganzas, enjoyed by Malcolm Troup

Ensemble. Tanglewood and Beyond - The sounds of summer in the Berkshires, reviewed by Lawrence Budmen

Ensemble. Intelligent and Cogent - Julian Jacobson attended the Beethoven Piano Society of Europe's Summer Celebrity Festival

Provocative thoughts, from Patric Standford - Analysis

CD Spotlight. Something for Everyone - A new CD from The 5 Browns, enjoyed by Kelly Ferjutz. '... charming, vivacious, passionate and gorgeously performed.'

Profile. Tête-à-Tête - Bill Newman talks to British pianist Mark Bebbington

Ensemble. Deeply satisfying - A piano recital by Jane Ford, reviewed by Mike Wheeler

Ensemble. Dynamic playing - Roberto Abbado strikes fire with the New World Symphony, and Lawrence Budmen was there

Giants? - Alistair Hinton replies to Patric Standford's latest Provocative Thoughts

Ensemble. Utterly gripping - A recital by Fiona McNaught and Daniel Tong, appreciated by Mike Wheeler

CD Spotlight. Aesthetic and didactic - Music by Respighi and Mussorgsky, reviewed by George Balcombe. 'Tadaaki Otaka conjures the composer's unique sound ...'

Ensemble. Passion and yearning - Sujeeva Hapugalle gives a piano recital at London's Leighton House, reviewed by Malcolm Miller

Provocations - Alistair Hinton and Chad Wozniak discuss Patric Standford's recent 'Provocative Thoughts'

Ensemble. Roulades of passion - Oleh Krysa and Tatiana Tchekina at London's Wigmore Hall, reviewed by Bill Newman

Ensemble. Darkness to light - Malcolm Tattersall is at the Australian Festival of Chamber Music

CD Spotlight. Often ravishing - Music by Debussy, Prokofiev, Britten and Ravel, reviewed by Robert Anderson. '... admirably encompassed ...'

Ensemble. A fitting celebration - The BBC National Orchestra of Wales plays Ravel, Hoddinott and Vaughan Williams, reviewed by Rex Harley

Ensemble. Muscular performance - Rex Harley is left breathless listening to violinist Chloë Hanslip

Ensemble. Ravel chestnut - A dazzling arrangement of 'Bolero' for two pianos, reviewed by Lawrence Budmen

Ensemble. Gypsy fire - Lawrence Budmen is impressed by Ukrainian violinist Vadim Gluzman

Record box. Brittle colour - Heidi Lowy plays Ravel, reviewed by Patric Standford

Ensemble. Perfect realisations - Mei Yi Foo at Steinway Hall, reviewed by Bill Newman

In the presence of greatness - David Thompson is impressed by Angela Hewitt's playing of Bach, Couperin and Ravel at London's South Bank International Piano Series

A passionate campaign - Tamami Honma's Wigmore Hall solo recital début impresses Keith Bramich

Ensemble. High spirits - Lawrence Budmen visits the Sarasota Music Festival

Special gifts - Rex Harley describes a magical concert experienced during a chance visit to the Leamington Festival

Performing practices - Pianist Danny Driver talks to Bill Newman

Ensemble. Purpose and insight - Malcolm Miller enjoys two outstanding débuts by German and Italian artists

Ensemble. Celebration and Desolation - Andrew Campling, Musical Director of the London Docklands Singers, attended a Trio Melisma concert in London

Second Sight - Music with Wilfrid Mellers - 15. Magic and Innocence. A double bill at Opera North. 'This production, given its musical values, must on no account be missed.'

Record box - Duetting. A new CD of French music considered by Basil Ramsey

Stage presence - Keith Bramich listens to soprano Anya Szreter in London's Regent Hall

Record box - Four-handed music. Igor Kipnis & Karen Kushner, with Basil Ramsey

Planning your collection - Luiza Borac -

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