Ravel Edition


Tzigane - Rapsodie de concert 

Version for violin and piano/violin and orchestra (1924)

This new revised edition (Ravel Edition Volume 5) was created upon the request of violinist Renaud Capuçon

The revised edition for violin and orchestra will be performed on 8 November 2020 by Renaud Capuçon and the Orchestre Philharmonique de Monte-Carlo, conducted by Fabien Gabel

Reading Committee :  Renaud Capuçon and Julien Szulman (violonists), Slava Guerchovitch (pianiste),  Benjamin Attahir (composer), Fabien GabelLudovic Morlot and  Pascal Rophé (conductors)

Proposing a revised edition of the two versions of Ravel’s Tzigane – Rapsodie de concert could have presented an enormous challenge, not least because in the handwritten orchestral score that the composer himself compiled in July 1924, currently kept at the Morgan Library in New York, the long introductory cadenza (marked as Quasi Cadenza) that takes up practically half of the work, is written in a single bar preceding the orchestra’s first entry. Furthermore, if we compare the solo part of this original score with the first edition for violin and piano published by Durand in August 1924, it is clear that the composer either made several copying errors or indeed changed numerous markings in terms of harmonics and phrasing when orchestrating the work two months after the violin and piano première: could it be more than a coincidence that Ravel made these modifications following the initial performances of the piano version given in London and Paris by Jelly d’Arányi and Samuel Dushkin?  S. Zank had suggested that an inaccessible manuscript of about fifteen pages might be in the A. Taverne Private Collection, however it was thanks to the recent communication of another full score for violin and piano (which includes the optional luthéal attachment), carefully preserved in the Archives du Palais de Monaco, that we were able to seriously consider presenting this new edition.

Signed by the composer and dated April-May 1924, alongside the marking “Paris Londres”, this invaluable resource introduces a complete cadenza, a close study of which reveals substantial modifications to the part, above all in the initial phrases, in which the rhythmic patterns are even more reminiscent of those found in Hungarian Rhapsody No.2 by Franz Liszt. Although we didn’t find any direct markings from the dedicatee herself on this score, we do know that she indeed provided Ravel with guidance in his solo violin writing for this undeniably bohemian-esque csárdás,  in many ways closely resembling the virtuosic ‘pièces de genre’ admired by by music salons at the end of the 19th Century. Regrettably, Jelly d’Arányi did not leave us with any recordings of this bravura piece, from which we may well have been able to grasp a sense of her “improvised” or ornamented style, as opposed to a strict reading of the composer’s text. However, the very first recordings of the piano version, including the one of the performance given in front of Ravel himself by Lucien Schwartz, violinist from the Orchestre Pasdeloup, which was published in January 1930 for Gramophone, have provided us with some assistance in finding answers to numerous editorial questions. François Dru – September 2020 (any reproduction, in part or in whole, is prohibited without prior authorisation from the editor).

 The scores of the violin and piano and violin and orchestra versions (Orchestral Material and the Orchestral Score) are available for sale. Contact : sales@21-music.be

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