Recorded on 06/22/2005, uploaded on 02/18/2009
Musician's or Publisher's Notes
Ravel composed a set of five piano pieces under the title Miroirs (Mirrors). Three of the five individual works were all
later orchestrated. The most successful of these re‑clothed pieces is certainly
the Alborada del Gracioso, heard here
transcribed for cello and piano.
means morning serenade. Generally it is sung by a
friend watching out for the safety of two illicit lovers; as the night wanes,
the friend sings outside the bedroom window that the dawn is approaching and
that it is time for the lovers to part. It is the second part of Ravel's title
that is uniquely elusive, for this is the morning song of the gracioso-a buffoon, a jester, a clown. So the
style is less typical of a romantic interlude, and more of a vigorous Spanish
dance, possibly somewhat comic in character, with typical Iberian rhythm and
the frequent opposition of 6/8 and 3/4 meters. Wendy Law
Courtesy of International Music Foundation.
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