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Essential Ravel

Sarah Walker introduces important works by Ravel. Including Histoires naturelles (1906); Tzigane (1924); Vocalise en forme de habanera; Rapsodie Espagnole; String Quartet.

Sarah Walker introduces a selection of the essential Ravel including the String Quartet, the song cycle Shéhérazade and some of his "Spanish" works including the Rapsodie espagnole and the Vocalise en forme de habanéra. Her guest is the Ravel authority Barbara Kelly and there'll be one of the Ravel Revealed features available as a free download.

Highlights in this hour include:

A rare recording of songs from the Histoires naturelles (1906) performed by Jane Bathori, the work's dedicatee.

Ravel's gypsy-inspired Tzigane (1924), performed by Chantal Juillet and Pascal Rogé, and featuring the piano luthéal, a recent invention of the time.

Classic performances in this hour include some of Ravel's 'Spanish' works:

Vocalise en forme de habanera
Natalie Dessay (soprano)
Berlin Symphony Orchestra
Michael Schonwandt (conductor)

Rapsodie espagnole
Chicago Symphony Orchestra
Jean Martinon (conductor)

In this hour, Sarah introduces her Essential Ravel recommendation:
String Quartet
Belcea Quartet.

3 hours

Music Played

  • Maurice Ravel

    Sonate posthume pour le violon et piano (1897)

    Performer: Philippe Graffin. Performer: Claire Désert.
    • Avie.
  • Maurice Ravel

    Histoires naturelles Nos. 1, 2 & 4

    Singer: Jane Bathori. Performer: Jane Bathori.
    • Marston.
  • Maurice Ravel


    Performer: Chantal Juillet. Performer: Pascal Rogé.
    • Decca.
  • Maurice Ravel


    Singer: Mireille Delunsch. Singer: Béatrice Uria-Monzon. Singer: Paul Groves. Orchestra: Orchestre du Capitole de Toulouse. Conductor: Michel Plasson.
    • EMI.
  • Ravel

    Les bayaderes

    Choir: Choeur de Paris-Sorbonne. Orchestra: Orchestre de Paris-Sorbonne. Conductor: Jacques Grimbert.
    • Marco Polo.
  • Maurice Ravel

    Serenade grotesque

    Performer: Jean‐Yves Thibaudet.
    • Decca.
  • Maurice Ravel

    Vocalise-etude en forme de habanera

    Singer: Natalie Dessay. Orchestra: Berlin Symphony Orchestra. Conductor: Michael Schønwandt.
    • EMI.
  • Maurice Ravel

    Rapsodie Espagnole

    Orchestra: Chicago Symphony Orchestra. Conductor: Jean Martinon.
    • RCA.
  • Maurice Ravel

    Histoires naturelles: Le cynge; La Pintade

    Performer: Nora Gubisch (mezzo-soprano). Performer: Alain Altinoglu (piano).
    • NAIVE.
  • Maurice Ravel

    Un grand sommeil noir

    Singer: Gerald Finley. Performer: Julius Drake.
    • Hyperion.
  • Maurice Ravel

    String Quartet

    Ensemble: Belcea Quartet.
    • EMI.
  • Maurice Ravel


    Singer: Heather Harper. Orchestra: BBC Symphony Orchestra. Performer: David Butt. Conductor: Pierre Boulez.
    • CBS.


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