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

Chopin - Étude Op. 10, No. 12 in C minor, "Revolutionary Étude"

Painting depicting the suppression of the Polish uprising by the Russians in 1830
The "Revolutionary" etude was composed after Chopin was informed that the 1831 Polish uprising had been crushed by the Russian troops.

It has been said about Chopin's Etudes that "they are as inaccessible to the musician without virtuosity as they are to the virtuoso without musicality". Certainly the "Revolutionary" Etude pushes the pianist to his limits.

But the technical complexity doesn't overshadow the musical flood for a moment.

Above the troubled part of the left hand, emotion and melody cross the storm like the unruly boat at the top of the wave.

Chopin designed this piece as a piano exercise or an etude for the left hand. All the 12 Etudes of Opus 10 are influenced by violinist Nikolo Paganini and pianist Franz Liszt and are dedicated to the latter.