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

Mozart - Andante in C Major for Flute and Orchestra, K315

In December 1777, Mozart wrote to his father in Salzburg about an order he had received from the amateur flute and music patron, Ferdinand De Jean. The order included, among other things, "three short, simple flute concertos".

Mozart wrote two concertos in 1778, but problems arose when the works reached his patron. It is alleged that De Jean rejected  first concert's Andante and asked for its replacement. Mozart responded to this request and wrote an alternative slow part, while the original - shown here - remained independent.

We find it hard to believe that this brilliantly written Andante, with its fluid, melodic flute, is an example of Mozart's composition for his least beloved instrument.

A brief orchestral introduction leads to a slow, lyrical original theme of the flute. The orchestral accompaniment is rich and full, but without ever exceeding the soloist. A string pizzicato leads to a final section - here the flute emerges from its lowest extent to a high point of its range, singing high above the other instruments. A short orchestral part gushing from the last note of the flute.

New, different, rather sad music follows - but no less beautiful. However it does not last long. The earlier ideas are repeated and lead to a cadenza, after which the whole completes the work.  
                           


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