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Re: [ARSCLIST] Bolero by Ravel the definitive version?
George Brock-Nannestead wrote:
If we are looking for a standard to judge Bolero performances by, I
would look for a performance lasting 17 minutes and having the dynamic
relationships between piccolos and French horn prescribed by Ravel. We
have to bear in mind that French wind and brass playing is in a separate
tradition, but it cannot mean that nobody else can play French music.
One of my jobs at All Music Guide is to help develop listings of
"definitive" recordings of Classical Works. The Ravel Bolero is chose is
the DG by Pierre Boulez, listed by us at:
It runs a bit short of George's recommendation at 14:58. And I am not
necessarily crazy about Boulez' interpretation of every work he
undertakes. But my experience has been that in Ravel he is especially
good, and certainly this recording reflects the orchestral texture
exactly it would appear on the page. This may not be to everyone's
tastes - I don't think this approach works well in, for example,
Stravinsky's Le Sacre, which needs some projection of personality, but
it is helpful if you are following the score.
No allowance need be made about the quality of this recording - like all
DG 4D productions the sound is absolutely stunning.
David N. Lewis
Assistant Classical Editor
All Media Guide
301 E. Liberty Suite 400
Ann Arbor, MI 48104