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CHAN 10251M
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CHAN 10251
(multiple CD Set)

Ravel: Orchestral Works

The Classical Shop
release date: September 2004

Originally recorded in 2003


Ulster Orchestra

Yan Pascal Tortelier

Stephen Roberts


Rachel Masters


Linda Finnie


Belfast Philharmonic Society & Renaissance Singers



Ulster Hall, Belfast


Ralph Couzens

(Menuet antique, Shéhérazade: Trois Poèmes, Introduction et Allegro, La Valse)

Tim Oldham

(Shéhérazade: Ouverture de féerie, Don Quichotte à Dulcinée, Tzigane, Fanfare, Une barque sur l'océan, Trio)

Brian Couzens

(other works)


Richard Lee

(Don Quichotte à Dulcinée, Tzigane, Menuet antique, Introduction et Allegro, Fanfare, Trio, La Valse, Une barque sur l'océn, Shéhérazade: Overture de féerie)

Ralph Couzens

(other works)

Record Label
Chandos Classics


Orchestral & Concertos

Total Time - 272:30
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Rapsodie espagnole

  Colin Stark cor anglais  
1 I Prélude à la nuit. Très modéré 4:14
2 II Malagueña. Assez vif 2:04
3 III Habanera. Assez lent et d'un rythme las 2:45
4 IV Feria. Assez animé 6:29

Alborada del gracioso

  Charles Miller bassoon  

Don Quichotte à Dulcinée*

  Three poems by Paul Morand for baritone with orchestral accompaniment  
6 I Chanson romanesque. Moderato 2:06
7 II Chanson épique. Molto moderato 3:06
8 III Chanson à boire. Allegro 1:43
 Stephen Roberts baritone*


  Concert rhapsody for violin and orchestra  
  Yan Pascal Tortelier violin  
  Lento, quasi cadenze - Moderato  

Pavane pour une infante défunte




Valses nobles et sentimentales

12 I Modéré 1:26
13 II Assez lent 2:51
14 III Modéré 1:48
15 IV Assez animé 1:29
16 V Presque lent 1:21
17 VI Assez vif 0:55
18 VII Moins vif 3:07
19 VIII Épilogue. Lent 4:22

Menuet antique


Le Tombeau de Couperin

  Suite for Orchestra  
  Christopher Blake oboe  
21 I Prélude. Vif 3:14
22 II Forlane. Allegretto 5:38
23 III Menuet. Allegro moderato 4:35
24 IV Riagaudon. Assez vif 2:58

Une barque sur l'océan

  Très souple de rythme  

Ma Mère l'oye

26 Prélude 3:00
27 Premier Tableau. Danse du Robert et Scène 3:37
28 Deuxième Tableau. Pavane de la Belle au bois dormant 2:29
29 Troisième Tableau. Les Entretiens de la Belle et de la Bête 4:42
30 Quatrième Tableau. Petit Poucet 4:29
31 Cinquième Tableau. Laideronnette, Impératrice des Pagodes 4:42
32 Sixième Tableau. Le Jardin féerique 3:48

Shéhérazade: Ouverture de féerie


Shéhérazade: Trois Poèmes†

  for mezzo-soprano and orchestra on verses by Tristan Klingsfor  
  Colin Fleming flute  
34 I Asie 9:53
35 II La Flûte enchantée 2:58
36 III L'Indifférent 4:05
 Linda Finnie mezzo-soprano†

Introduction et Allegro

  for harp with string orchestra [quartet], flute and clarinet accompaniment  
 Rachel Masters harp

Fanfare from 'L'Éventail de Jeanne'

  Allegro moderato  

Trio in A minor

  in a-Moll - en la mineur  
39 I Modéré 9:13
40 II Pantoum. Assez vif 4:38
41 III Passacaille. Très large 6:25
42 IV Finale. Animé 6:20

Daphnis et Chloé

  Symphonie chorégraphique  
  Scenario by Michel Fokine, after Longus  
  Colin Fleming flute  
43 Première Partie. Une prairie à la lisière d'un bois sacré 28:29
44 Deuxième Partie. Une lueur sourde. On est au camp des pirates 10:03
45 Troisième Partie. Le décor semble se fondre. Il est remplacé par le paysage de la Première Partie à la fin de la nuit 16:38

La Valse

  Poème chorégraphique  
 Yan Pascal Tortelier
  31 October 1988 (Ma Mère l'oye)  
  26 June 1989 (Le Tombeau de Couperin, Pavane)  
  2 Octoer 1989 (Valses nobles et sentimentales)  
  5-8 December 1989 (Alborada del gracioso, Bolero)  
  26-30 May 1990 (Daphnis et Chloé, Shéhérazade: Ouvertue de féerie and Trois Poèmes)  
  16 August 1990 (Don Quichotte à Dulcinée, Tzigane)  
  18-20 February 1991 (La Valse, Menuet antique, Introduction et Allegro)  
  29 May 1991 (Fanfare)  
  3 & 4 June 1992 (Une barque sur l'océan, Trio)  
‘Since I was a teenager, Ravel’s music has always spoken directly to me’, says Yan Pascal Tortelier. It
was in 1989, when he was appointed Principal Conductor and Artistic Director of the Ulster Orchestra, that he broached the subject of recording some of his native French repertoire with Chandos. The reaction of Chandos’ chairman, Brian Couzens, was enthusiastic. He recalls: ‘Suddenly I found myself presented with the opportunity to record all of the orchestral music of Ravel and Debussy at one go… this was extraordinary… many of my French colleagues hardly have the chance to do half of this repertoire…’
Tortelier’s time with the Ulster Orchestra was extraordinarily fertile and these recordings represent the summit of their combined achievement.

Four-CD set for the price of 3 mid-price CDs.

Collectors’ edition, elegantly presented in a stylish modern cat box

Where Ravel’s contemporary and fellow French impressionist Debussy pushed back the boundaries of form and tonality, Ravel cultivated a contemporary style which embraced classicism. He was fascinated by the great Lisztian pianistic tradition (as is demonstrated in Gaspard de la nuit) and drawn towards the purity of eighteenth-century composers such as Rameau (as in Pavane pour une infante défunte). In fact, Ravel’s music displays a variety of disparate influences, such as gypsy music, jazz, Spanish culture and the music of the Orient, bound together with brilliant wit and an unrivalled mastery of orchestral colour.

Ravel spent his childhood in Paris and even as a young man developed an unconventional personal style. His progressiveness offended his elders, but that did not stop him writing, while still in his twenties, some of his greatest works, including the Rapsodie espagnole and Daphnis et Chloé. With the outbreak of World War I he tried to enter the services, but he was too short and underweight, so he became an ambulance driver .The beautiful Le Tombeau de Couperin was written as a tribute to the dead. He was released from his duties in 1916 after a total physical collapse. After the death of Debussy in 1918 Ravel was fêted as France’s greatest composer, but his output was diminishing. The last two decades produced fine works such as Tzigane and the Bolero but most of his time he spent tampering with earlier compositions. In 1937
he was struck by a virulent brain disease and died in December of that year during an operation to remove a tumour.

…for those who above all simply wish to luxuriate in some of the most spellbinding scores in existence,Torteliers set could well prove to be the most rewarding of all… serious fans will prefer Tortelier.
Classic CD

How you feel about this compilation may come down to where you place Ravel as an impressionist. In Tortelier’s hands, he is more of a neoclassical modernist than a blending shimmering impressionist, Sometimes he’s even a romantic. Tortelier’s approach is direct, with clear textures and clearly defined solos and choirs. Tempos are on the fast side, and the lively rhythms are solid and sometimes to the front of the beat in a way that really keeps the music moving. Articulations and note shapes are consistent and even. The soundstage is large, with considerable weight and powerful climaxes (for Ravel).
American Record Guide

…What a glorious instrument the Ulster Orchestra is in Torteliers hands…
American Record Guide

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