Good luck did however enter the equation when the director the Ballet Russe called on Stravinsky to check on progress for a commissioned work “The Rite of Spring” only to find no progress at all! The composer had been tinkering instead with an orchestral piece about a puppet who comes to life. Stravinsky was instructed to forget “The Rite of Spring” for the time being and so the ballet “Petrushka” was born: and what better way to appreciate something that nearly wasn’t than to see it performed in an old recording by none other than the Bolshoi Ballet.
‘Borrowed and new’ was present day composer Max Richter’s “Recomposed” – a rejiggered version of Vivaldi’s “Four Seasons”; while a chance meeting between Maurice Ravel and George Gershwin led to Ravel composing a piano concerto incorporating a “bluesy” main theme bearing an uncanny resemblance to Gershwin’s adaptations of the jazz idiom.
Put “a sixpence in your shoe” and enjoy this wonderful music for yourself by clicking on the respective links below.
How Stravinsky tells a Story
Petrushka - Ballet
Recomposed - Richter
Piano Concerto in G - Ravel