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Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov (Uncredited)

Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov

Prolific Russian composer Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov (1844-1908) is perhaps best known for his orchestral compositions, especially the symphonic suite Scheherazade (1888), based on the story of the sultan’s wife who tells him a series of stories for 1,001 nights (the Tales of the Arabian Nights.) Rimsky-Korsakov also wrote 15 operas, including The Tsar’s Bride (1898), as well as symphonies, choral music, and songs. One of his operas contains his famous short work, “The Flight of the Bumblebee.” Rimsky-Korsakov was born into an aristocratic family who, though realizing their son had musical ability, did not take it seriously because being a composer was not considered suitable for someone of their social standing. Based on his parents’ wishes, he studied for a career in the Imperial Russian Navy.

Video and Audio

Watch an excerpt of Rimsky-Korsakov's Flight of the Bumblebee

From the National Symphony Orchestra: 2011-2012 Season Preview Concert with Assistant Conductor Ankush Kumar Bahl.