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Ravel, Maurice (1875-1937)  
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Ravel also wrote two interesting operas. Although they are minor works, they continue to please contemporary audiences. L'Heure espagnole, which premiered in Paris in 1911 at the Opéra Comique, tries to capture a day in the life of a bored, unfaithful wife of a clockmaker in eighteenth-century Spain. L'Enfant et les sortilèges, with a libretto by Colette, had its first performance at the Monte Carlo Opera in 1925 and explores a child's relationship with his mother, his environment, and his fantasies.

Near the end of his life, Ravel received numerous accolades. The French government planned to award him the Légion d'Honneur. Unfortunately, the honor was announced publicly before Ravel had been informed of the decision. Infuriated, the composer declined to accept the award. In 1931, however, he accepted an honorary doctorate from Oxford University.

In 1928, Ravel made a triumphant four-month tour of the United States, where he met many musical notables, including George Gershwin, whom he admired greatly.

In his final years, Ravel suffered a series of health problems and gradually lost the ability to communicate with others. He died in Paris on December 28, 1937 after a series of strokes and an unsuccessful brain operation.

John Louis DiGaetani

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Kelly, Barbara A. "Maurice Ravel." The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians. Stanley Sadie, ed. London: Macmillan, 2001.

Laloy, Louis. Louis Laloy on Debussy, Ravel, and Stravinsky. Aldershot, England: Ashgate, 1999.

Mawer, Deborah, ed. The Cambridge Companion to Ravel. New York: Cambridge University Press, 2000.


    Citation Information
    Author: DiGaetani, John Louis  
    Entry Title: Ravel, Maurice  
    General Editor: Claude J. Summers  
    Publication Name: glbtq: An Encyclopedia of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual,
Transgender, and Queer Culture
    Publication Date: 2002  
    Date Last Updated November 9, 2004  
    Web Address  
    Publisher glbtq, Inc.
1130 West Adams
Chicago, IL   60607
    Today's Date  
    Encyclopedia Copyright: © 2002-2006, glbtq, Inc.  
    Entry Copyright ©2002, glbtq, inc.  


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