Maurice Ravel

Fun Facts

  • Ravel began music lessons when he was six.

  • Ravel was very close to his mother; he lived with her until her death.

  • Ravel's father, Joseph, was an inventor.

  • Ravel was one of the greatest orchestrators of all time.

  • A man of impeccable manners, Ravel was meticulous about his appearance and attire.

  • A man of impeccable manners, Ravel was meticulous about his appearance and attire.

  • Although nearly 40, Ravel served in the motor corps during WWI after being rejected from serving in the French Army.

  • Ravel's Bolero was famously skated to by Torvill and Dean at the Sarajevo Winter Olympics in 1984.

  • After he suffered a blow to his head in a taxi accident, Ravel was frequently absent-minded.

  • In the backyard of his home, Ravel had a Japanese garden.

  • Ravel admired the jazz he heard while touring the United States; he would go on to include some jazz elements in his later compositions.

  • During his last years, Ravel suffered from Pick's disease, a brain ailment that affects speech and movement.

  • Because Ravel was so meticulous, it took him a very long time to finish his compositions.

  • Ravel never married; his private life remains mostly a mystery.

More Resources

Fun Facts

Check out our collection of interesting and (some) little known facts about Ravel.

Biography

View Maurice Ravel's full biography.