Series S00757 - Ravel’s Brain

Title proper

Ravel’s Brain

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  • Textual record
  • Graphic material
  • Moving images
  • Sound recording

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Reference code

S00757

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Issuing jurisdiction and denomination (philatelic)

Date(s)

  • 1987-2000 (Creation)

Physical description

0.5 m of textual records
10 film reels : 35mm
15 film reels : Super16mm
2 film reels : 16mm
77 videocassettes : BetacamSP, Digital Betacam, ¾” U-Matic, VHS
32 audio tapes : ¼” tape, Hi8 and DAT
3 CD-R
83 photographs : col. ; 13 x 18 cm or smaller
209 photographs : col. slides ; 35 mm
8 contact sheets : b&w : 21.4 x 28 cm or smaller
8 posters : 68.4 x 99 cm and 76 x 101 cm
1 computer disk ; 9 x 9 cm
2 Zipdisks

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Scope and content

Series consists of research notes, photographs, correspondence, production notes, film and audio elements of the documentary “Ravel’s Brain”. Written and directed by Larry Weinstein, “Ravel’s Brain” is described as a “musical/visual tone poem” exploring the final five years of composer Maurice Ravel (1875- 1937), who due to the degenerative brain conditions of aphasia and apraxia, was
able to produce music but not write it down or perform it. The project was initiated in early 1998 by Weinstein but was not completed until 2000, due to resistance from the Ravel estate.

Featuring the performances of the WDR (Sinfonieorchester des Westdeutschen Rundfunks) Symphony Orchestra and Radio Choir of Cologne, the film features interviews with Ravel’s colleagues, archival footage of his home in Montfort- l’Amaruy and his birthplace of Basque Ciboure. The bulk of the work was filmed on location in Marrakesh, a source of inspiration to Ravel.

The documentary featured staged dramatic scenes in which Thierry Costa played Maurice Ravel, Richard Cowan as Dr. Clovis Vincent and Jacques Dewitt as
Léon Leyritz. Some elements of the film may be reused from an earlier Rhombus production “Ravel”.

The project received three Gemini awards in 2002, best picture editing in a comedy, variety or performing arts program (for David New) and best sound in the same category (for Lou Solakofski, Peter Cook, Goro Koyama, David McCallum, and Jane Tattersall) and best production design (for Ambre Fernandez). It also received awards for best direction at Toronto’s Hot Docs festival and other international documentary film festivals.

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Status

Final

Level of detail

Full

Dates of creation, revision and deletion

2019/04/11 J. Grant. Creation. Added content from finding aid created by A. St Onge.

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