October 27, 2017 -

Evergreen Brick Works

TEDxToronto 2014 Performance: The Toronto Symphony Orchestra: Ravel’s “Boléro”

  • 2014
  • Arts & Culture

Founded in 1922, the Toronto Symphony Orchestra (TSO) is one of Canada’s most important cultural institutions, recognized internationally as an outstanding orchestra. To open TEDxToronto 2014, the TSO gave a surprise performance of Maurice Ravel’s “Boléro.” The snare drum sets the piece in motion; against the rhythmic foundation it taps out continuously, the main theme is first played, very quietly, by a flute, then gradually, every type of orchestral instrument joins in with the theme in turn. The ensemble steadily increases in sound and size as the piece progresses, until all members of the orchestra are playing, reaching full volume at the piece’s climax. As a musical representation of this conference’s theme, “Boléro” brings to mind an evolving entity of many parts working together in steady—though relentless—pursuit of a single goal.