Ravel's Brain

Excerpt from Ravel's Brain

Directed by Larry Weinstein
Produced by Rhombus Media
Music by Maurice Ravel
Musical Performances by WDR Symphony Orchestra and WDR Radio Choir, Cologne

Ravel's Brain , directed by Larry Weinstein, is a musical/visual tone poem at once tragic and celebratory in its mood. The film portrays the inner being of a great artist who was rendered incapable of communicating with the outside world. For the last five years of his life, Maurice Ravel was the victim of his own lamentable circumstances. Afflicted by aphasia and apraxia, his brain produced music, but he was unable to write it down. Ravel's Brain features interviews with a handful of Ravel's intimates as well as images of his home in Montfort L'Amaury and his birthplace in Basque Ciboure where he first noticed the symptoms of his illness. The film takes us to Marrakesh where Ravel, deep in the throes of his illness, was so inspired by the swirling Arabic street music that he was graced with a few moments of lucid music-making. The resulting musical phrases and Ravel's final musical utterances are heard in RAVEL'S BRAIN for the very first time. Finally, Ravel's brain operation that ultimately proved to be fatal, is recreated and set to song.


Best Direction, Hot Docs, Toronto
Nominated for an International EMMY
The Chris Award, Columbus International Film & Video Festival
Nominated, Golden Rose, Montreux
Silver Rembrandt, Nombre d'Or, Amsterdam
Hot Springs Documentary Film Festival
American Psychological Association Conference FamaFest, Portugal
International TV Science Fiction Film Festival, Paris
The Cinematique, Canada
The National Gallery of Art Film Exhibition, DC

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