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The World's Greatest Music
Some snow-covered recommendations from the Russian section of Katherine's collection.
Alexander Borodin was a member of a group of Russian composers who met in St. Petersburg known as The Five – or sometimes ‘The Mighty Handful’. They wanted to produce a specifically Russian kind of music, rather than one that relied on conventional European conservatory training. ‘So if you listen to their works,’ says Katherine, ‘you’ll get musical references to village songs, Cossack dances, religious chants - even the tolling of church bells (which can get a little tiring after a while).’ For Borodin, music was something he pursued alongside having a high-profile career in chemistry. Nevertheless he managed to write symphonies, string quartets, and the epic opera Prince Igor. This beautiful tune from his second String Quartet was later put to use in the Broadway musical, Kismet.
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