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Laideronnette, Empress of the Pagodas from Mother Goose Suite by Maurice Ravel Arr. Doug Wallace
For Sale Item
Type of Piece: Percussion Ensemble with Flute (2007)
Instrumentation: Flute, Glockenspiel, Xylophone, Marimba, Vibraphone, Optional Tam Tam (gong) and Cymbal (4 Players)
Length: 3-4 minutes
Package Includes: Score & Parts
Notes: Maurice Ravel's Mother Goose Suite was originally written as a five part suite for two pianos in 1908, and later orchestrated for the ballet in 1911. The third part, Laideronnette, Empress of the Pagodas, depicts a Chinese princess who, through a curse, has been transformed into an ugly little girl. She eventually meets a travel companion in the form of a green serpent and they become shipwrecked on the island of the Pagodas (tiny porcelain people with bodies made of jewels and instruments made of nutshells). In the end, the girl becomes Queen of the Pagodas, is made a pretty princess again, and marries the serpent (who is transformed back into his original form, King of the Pagodas). The Laideronnette movement of Mother Goose Suite invokes the sound and feel of the far east due to the use of the pentatonic scale, the brilliant percussion orchestration that includes xylophone, glockenspiel, cymbals and gong (tam tam), and the strong influence Javanese and Balinese gamelan had on Ravel while he was composing the piece.
The following quote is found at the beginning of the movement in the score:
"She undressed herself and went into the bath. The pagodes and pagodines began to sing and play on instruments. Some had oboes made of walnut shells and others had violas made of almond shells - for they had to have instruments that were of their own small proportions."