Maurice Ravel -The Swiss Watchmaker

Maurice Ravel was born on March 7, 1875, in the small fishing village of Ciboure in the Basque region, near the Franco-Spanish border.  His father, Pierre-Joseph, was a Frenchman of Swiss descent. Pierre-Joseph, a distinguished engineer, met and fell in love with his future wife, a young and beautiful Basque, Marie Delouart, at the time she worked on the Spanish railways.  A few months after Maurice's birth, the family moved from Ciboure to Paris. The parents of Maurice Ravel, Pierre-Joseph Ravel and Marie Delouart. Maurice had a happy childhood. The parents encouraged their two children - Edouard was born in 1878 - to follow their vocation. Maurice's inclination was music. He started music lessons at the age of seven.  Unlike the parents of other composers, Pierre-Joseph viewed positively the prospect of a musical career and sent Maurice to the France's most important musical college, the Conservatoire de Paris in 1889. In the same year, the Paris Exhibition brought toget

Ave Maria

Prayer to the Virgin Mary, consisting of two parts. The first part comes from the Gospel (Lukas 1,28 and 42) and the second part was added in the 13th century (at the end from “Santa Maria”). For this reason, the entire text is only set to music in a relatively late era. Mainly great composers of the polyphonic music of the 16th century (Joaquin des Prez, Orlando di Lasso, Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina, Claudio Monteverdi and others) were enchanted by this prayer and they offered us wonderful compositions.

The prayer returned to the pinnacle of its glory in 1800 when F.P.Schubert set Ave Maria to music:

Also interesting is Gounaud’s Ave Maria, who was set to music according to the harmonious basis of a prelude of J.S.Bach.