Maurice Ravel(1875-1937), Composer and pianist
Sitter in 3 portraits
One of France’s pre-eminent composers. He joined the Thirteenth Artillery Regiment as a lorry driver in March 1915, transporting munitions within close range of enemy gunfire. With his physical and mental health deteriorating, Ravel was provisionally discharged in June 1917. Ravel composed little during the war years, the most notable of which, Le tombeau de Couperin (1914-17), memorialised six friends killed during the war in each movement. With diminished physical and mental stamina, Ravel composed less in the years after the war and adopted a more pared back style. He wrote his most famous work, Boléro in 1928.
Watch a film clip on the sitter from the BBC Archive in the Media section below