bô vélo

  • for guitar nonet (soli soprano, alto 1 and 2, prime 1 and 2, tenor, bass, contrabass and guitarrone), 1 percussionist on suspended cymbal, 1 harpsichord, 1 electric guitar and 1 synthesizer guitar, Nibori guitar orchestra (soprano, alto 1 and 2, prime 1 and 2, tenor, bass, contrabass and guitarrone)

  • Duration: 6' 20"
  • In 1 movement
  • Composed in 2010
  • First performance: 03.04.11
Programme notes:

Bô vélo is the facetious title of Maurice Ravel's Bolero arranged by R Casteels after Pink Martini’s arrangement. A Bolero is a Spanish and Cuban slow dance. Chopin, Bizet and Saint-Saëns and Debussy composed boleros. French composer Maurice Ravel (1875 – 1937) composed a one-movement orchestral piece for Ida Rubinstein‘s ballet company. The premiere in 1928 was a great success. To the composer’s own annoyance, Ravel's Bolero became his most well-known piece often played as a concert piece. The theory that the obsessive repetition of a single musical phrase was  the initial stage of Ravel’s frontotemporal dementia holds no water. Ravels’ semantic aphasia was in fact the consequence of a serious head injury sustained in a taxi accident in 1932, 4 years after composing Bolero. Pink Martini is a chamber orchestra founded in 1994 by pianist Thomas Lauderdale in Oregon, USA, who draws inspiration from different styles and parts of the world. Pink Martini’s debut album entitled Sympathique which was released independently in 1997 quickly became an international success and contained Ravel’s Bolero track entitled Never on Sunday.


Composer, conductor in Singapore with specialty in fusion music

Copyright © Robert Casteels 2021. All rights reserved.