Le Gibet from "Gaspard de la Nuit"
Maurice Ravel, arr. Andrew Anderson
for Wind Ensemble - Grade 5
During my time as a graduate assistant at Oklahoma State University, I asked Dr. Joseph Missal if I might create a transcription for the group - to that point, I had never been around an ensemble with that level of ability, and the idea of creating a work for them was very appealing! Dr. Missal's request was that I arrange something from the Impressionist era, perhaps as a counterpart or a foil to Merlin Patterson's arrangement of Debussy's "The Engulfed Cathedral." Dr. Ben Lorenzo suggested I look at Ravel's "Le Gibet," which proved to be just the mood I had in mind. The work, which is the middle movement of the piano suite "Gaspard de la Nuit," focuses on a prose poem by Aloysius Bertrand. Bertrand's writing is an image of a hanged man on a gallows, tinged red by a dwindling sunset. This somber mood is reflected in Ravel's piano work by a consistent bell-like toll, which I have retained in percussion while orchestrating the rest of the music for Wind Ensemble. I give my deepest thanks to Dr. Ben Lorenzo for the idea of the work, and to Dr. Joseph Missal for both his support and for premiering the arrangement with the Oklahoma State University Wind Ensemble.