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Sérénade grotesque

Maurice Ravel (1875-1937)

Sérénade grotesque

Whatever the techniques and influences, Ravel was able to transmute them into his own manner from the outset. The Sérénade grotesque (1893) which is his Op.1, is supposed to have been influenced by Chabrier, though having been through my Chabrier, the connection escapes me. In its unrefined (i.e. probably not fully prepared for publication - it was only resurrected in 1975) bizarreness it turns out sounding not quite like anybody else; it is a kind of very primitive version of Alborada del gracioso; as I was recording it, it reminded most people, in its quirkiness, of the Stravinsky of Petrushka.

©Paul Crossley

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