Maurice Ravel (1875-1937)
Le Tombeau de Couperin
(arranged for wind quintet by Mason Jones)

Le Tombeau de Couperin was composed between 1914 and 1917 as a piano suite in six movements. Although its title refers only to the eighteenth-century French composer François Couperin, the work as a whole pays homage not just to Couperin but also to the spectrum of French music from the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, and is highly nationalistic: each movement is dedicated to a friend of Ravel's killed in the Great War. Like many of Ravel's piano works, the piece was later orchestrated (in a shorter, four-movement form) by the composer, a man perhaps more widely respected for his orchestration than his composition. The wind instruments play a highly dominant rôle, brought out in this effective transcription for wind quintet by Mason Jones. JCC

© 2001 The Arethusa Ensemble