Thursday, 19 June 2014
At South West Art Workshops we listen to a lot of Classical music in the office. One piece that never fails to inspire us is Ravel’s Boléro (1875-1937). Having played the oboe for eight long years as a young girl, the oboe d’amore stands out for me, but essentially Ravel instructs the same melody to be passed on across various instruments again and again. Luckily for me the oboe comes twice. In recent years it has been suggested the repetitive, almost hypnotic rhythm of this masterpiece could be explained as a manifestation of Alzheimer’s disease. Ravel was known to have suffered various health problems in the last years of his life whilst writing his Boléro and lost the ability to put his compositions down on paper. It is ironic then, that music is now posited as one of the most progressive and effective preventative measures against Alzheimer’s and Dementia.