Orchestration by Ravel

I’ve always loved the way this piece — the “Habanera” from “Rhapsodie espagnole” — is orchestrated, the whole thing, but particularly the aromatic chord change from minor to major starting at the one minute mark in this recording and repeated at the end.

Mussorgsky: ‘Night on Bald Mountain,’ original version

Russian composer Modest Mussorgsky was born on this date (Old Style) in 1839.

Here’s the seldom-heard original version of his “Night on Bald Mountain.” The work is most familiar in a rather radical arrangement made by Rimsky-Korsakov. In many ways, what Rimsky-Korsakov did is an improvement. But this original version, though messy in details and in form, has a certain primitive grit, charm and spirit.

Claudio Abbado conducts the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra.