27 - 29 May 2016

En Rêve


If the music of Debussy and Ravel is known for its liberating historical leap into a freer, more nuanced palette of sound, the string orchestra arrangements of some of their most well-known pieces add yet another layer.

The natural expressiveness of strings, from the low, rich timbre of the double bass to the suspended shimmer of the violin’s highest register, provides a fascinating canvas upon which we can open up the heady impressionism of the two composers. Debussy’s only String Quartet is followed by the exotic, pagan-tinged story-telling of his Epigraphes, originally written for piano. Barshai’s arrangement for string orchestra of Ravel’s String Quartet in F major, commissioned by SE, is matched with an array of his shorter works to create a beautiful patchwork of textures and colours.

Dream-like music to expand the mind. An escape from the structure of the real into the realm of the imagined…

  • Ravel
    Pièce en forme de Habanera [arr. Manson]
  • Fauré
    Berceuse [arr. Manson]
  • Fauré
    Après un rêve [arr. Manson]
  • Debussy
    Golliwogg’s Cakewalk (from Children’s Corner, No.6)
  • Debussy
    String Quartet in G minor, Op.10 [arr. Morton]
  • Debussy
    Six Epigraphes Antiques [arr. Paillard]
  • Ravel
    Petite symphonie à cordes [String Quartet arr. Barshai]