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Nikolay Rimsky-Korsakov

Nikolai Andreyevich Rimsky-Korsakov (Russian: Николай Андреевич Римский-Корсаков, IPA: [nʲɪkəˈlaj ɐnˈdrʲejɪvʲɪtɕ ˈrʲimskʲɪj ˈkorsəkəf] (listen); 18 March [O.S. 6 March] 1844 – 21 June [O.S. 8 June] 1908) was a Russian composer, and a member of the group of composers known as The Five. He was a master of orchestration. His best-known orchestral compositions—Capriccio Espagnol, the Russian Easter Festival Overture, and the symphonic suite Scheherazade—are staples of the classical music repertoire, along with suites and excerpts from some of his 15 operas. Scheherazade is an example of his frequent use of fairy-tale and folk subjects.

Rimsky-Korsakov believed in developing a nationalistic style of classical music, as did his fellow-composer Mily Balakirev and the critic Vladimir Stasov. This style employed Russian folk song and lore along with exotic harmonic, melodic and rhythmic elements in a practice known as musical orientalism, and eschewed traditional Western compositional methods. Rimsky-Korsakov appreciated Western musical techniques after he became a professor of musical composition, harmony, and orchestration at the Saint Petersburg Conservatory in 1871. He undertook a rigorous three-year program of self-education and became a master of Western methods, incorporating them alongside the influences of Mikhail Glinka and fellow members of The Five. Rimsky-Korsakov's techniques of composition and orchestration were further enriched by his exposure to the works of Richard Wagner.

For much of his life, Rimsky-Korsakov combined his composition and teaching with a career in the Russian military—at first as an officer in the Imperial Russian Navy, then as the civilian Inspector of Naval Bands. He wrote that he developed a passion for the ocean in childhood from reading books and hearing of his older brother's exploits in the navy. This love of the sea may have influenced him to write two of his best-known orchestral works, the musical tableau Sadko (not to be confused with his later opera of the same name) and Scheherazade. As Inspector of Naval Bands, Rimsky-Korsakov expanded his knowledge of woodwind and brass playing, which enhanced his abilities in orchestration. He passed this knowledge to his students, and also posthumously through a textbook on orchestration that was completed by his son-in-law, Maximilian Steinberg.

Rimsky-Korsakov left a considerable body of original Russian nationalist compositions. He prepared works by The Five for performance, which brought them into the active classical repertoire (although there is controversy over his editing of the works of Modest Mussorgsky), and shaped a generation of younger composers and musicians during his decades as an educator. Rimsky-Korsakov is therefore considered "the main architect" of what the classical-music public considers the "Russian style" of composition. His influence on younger composers was especially important, as he served as a transitional figure between the autodidactism exemplified by Glinka and The Five, and professionally trained composers which would become the norm in Russia by the closing years of the 19th century. While Rimsky-Korsakov's style was based on those of Glinka, Balakirev, Hector Berlioz, Franz Liszt and, for a brief period, Wagner, he "transmitted this style directly to two generations of Russian composers" and influenced non-Russian composers including Maurice Ravel, Claude Debussy, Paul Dukas, and Ottorino Respighi.

Birth and Death Data: Born March 18th, 1844 (Tikhvin), Died June 21st, 1908 (Lyubensk)

Date Range of DAHR Recordings: 1902 - 1950

Roles Represented in DAHR: composer, orchestrator, lyricist

Recordings (Results 151-175 of 211 records)

Company Matrix No. Size First Recording Date Title Primary Performer Description Role Audio
OKeh S-72109 10-in. Nov. 1923 Hymn to the sun Harold Leonard ; Red Jackets Jazz/dance band composer  
OKeh W401834 10-in. 4/26/1929 Hymn to the sun Eugene Ormandy Violin solo, with piano composer  
OKeh W401835 10-in. 4/26/1929 Song of India Eugene Ormandy Violin solo composer  
Brunswick 7432 10-in. approximately Feb. 1922 Song of the shepherd Lehl Florence Easton Soprano vocal solo, with orchestra composer  
Brunswick 7176-7178 10-in. approximately Jan. 1922 Song of India Rudy Wiedoeft's Californians Jazz/dance band composer  
Brunswick 7466-7467 10-in. approximately Feb. 1922 Chanson indoue Florence Easton Soprano vocal solo, with orchestra composer  
Brunswick 8801-8802 10-in. approximately Sept. 1922 Eastern romance Nina Koshetz Female vocal solo, with piano composer  
Brunswick 13894-13896 10-in. 10/8/1924 Hymn to the sun Mishel Piastro Violin solo, with piano composer  
Brunswick 13985-13986 10-in. 10/21/1924 Hymn to the sun Mishel Piastro Violin solo, with piano composer  
Brunswick 14186-14188 10-in. 11/11/1924 Hymn to the sun Mishel Piastro Violin solo, with orchestra composer  
Brunswick E16246 10-in. 8/26/1925 Hymne au soleil Virginia Rea Soprano vocal solo, with orchestra composer  
Brunswick E16289 10-in. 8/31/1925 Hymne au soleil Virginia Rea Soprano vocal solo, with orchestra composer  
Brunswick E16108-E16110 10-in. 8/12/1925 Hymne au soleil Virginia Rea Contralto vocal solo, with orchestra composer  
Brunswick E16393-E16395 10-in. 9/17/1925 Hymne au soleil Virginia Rea Soprano vocal solo, with orchestra composer  
Brunswick E16532-E16534 10-in. 10/6/1925 Song of India Fredric Fradkin Violin solo, with piano composer  
Brunswick E16649-E16650 10-in. 10/15/1925 Hymne de le soleil Virginia Rea Soprano vocal solo, with orchestra composer  
Brunswick E16731-E16732 10-in. 10/19/1925 Song of India Fredric Fradkin Violin solo, with piano composer  
Brunswick TC2265 10-in. 8/23/1928 Chansant indue Vivian Holt Female vocal solo composer  
Brunswick [C258]-[C260] 10-in. 5/1/1926 Song of India Cleveland Orchestra ; Nikolai Sokoloff Orchestra composer  
Brunswick DB106 10-in. 10/19/1928 Dance of the tumblers Duophone Military Band Band composer  
Brunswick 1359bm 10-in. 1928 Scheherazade : 1st movement, pt. 1 Oscar Fried ; Philharmonic Orchestra of Berlin, The Orchestra composer  
Brunswick 1360½bm 10-in. 1928 Scheherazade : 1st movement, pt. 2 Oscar Fried ; Philharmonic Orchestra of Berlin, The Orchestra composer  
Brunswick 1361bm 10-in. 1928 Scheherazade : 1st movement, pt. 3 Oscar Fried ; Philharmonic Orchestra of Berlin, The Orchestra composer  
Brunswick 1362bm 10-in. 1928 Scheherazade : 2nd movement, pt. 1 Oscar Fried ; Philharmonic Orchestra of Berlin, The Orchestra composer  
Brunswick 1363½bm 10-in. 1928 Scheherazade : 2nd movement, pt. 2 Oscar Fried ; Philharmonic Orchestra of Berlin, The Orchestra composer  
(Results 151-175 of 211 records)

Citation

Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "Rimsky-Korsakov, Nikolay," accessed December 2, 2021, https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/102531.

Rimsky-Korsakov, Nikolay. (2021). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved December 2, 2021, from https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/102531.

"Rimsky-Korsakov, Nikolay." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2021. Web. 2 December 2021.

DAHR Persistent Identifier

URI: https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/102531

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