maurice ravel – miroirs

I can recommend Ravel’s piano works as suitable accompaniment when hurtling through the dark across unfamiliar country in a high-speed train.

Miroirs (“Reflections”) is a suite for solo piano written by French impressionist composer Maurice Ravel between 1904 and 1905, first performed by Ricardo Viñes in 1906.

Around 1900, Maurice Ravel joined a group of innovative young artists, poets, critics, and musicians referred to as “Les Apaches” or “hooligans”, a term coined by Ricardo Viñes to refer to his band of “artistic outcasts”.

To pay tribute to his fellow artists, Ravel began composing Miroirs in 1904 and finished it the following year. There are five movements, each dedicated to a member of Les Apaches:

1. “Noctuelles” (“Night Moths”) – Dedicated to Léon-Paul Fargue

2. “Oiseaux tristes” (“Sad Birds”) – Dedicated to Ricardo Viñes

3. “Une barque sur l’océan” (“A boat on the Ocean”) – Dedicated to Paul Sordes

4. “Alborada del gracioso” (“The Alborada Gracioso’s Aubade”) – Dedicated to Michel-Dimitri Calvocoressi

5. “La vallée des cloches” (“The Valley of Bells”) – Dedicated to Maurice Delage.

Pianist: Jean-Efflam Bavouzet

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