Summary Alexander Porfirievich Borodin

Summary Alexander Porfirievich Borodin

ALEXANDER PORFIRYEVICH BORODIN

1833-1887

Borodin is an outstanding composer, a prominent chemist, a tireless scientist and public figure. His musical heritage is quantitatively small, but diverse in content. The composer’s interest in the heroic images of the Russian heroic epos was reflected in the opera and two symphonies, impressive with mighty power, with a grand scale. Borodin created timeless samples of vocal lyrics. His musical style is marked by harmonic clarity, gravitation towards monumentality and classical completeness. The generous melodic gift of the composer was nourished both by Russian folk song and by oriental music.

Alexander Porfirievich Borodin was born on October 31 (November 12) in 1833 in St. Petersburg. In 1856 he graduated from the Medical

and Surgical Academy, and two years later received a doctorate in medicine. Interest in music was awakened by Borodin early. In childhood and adolescence, he was fond of playing the cello, flute and piano and composed as an amateur. The composer’s creative activity increased due to his rapprochement with Balakirev and participation in the activities of his circle, which was later named “The Mighty Handful.” In his First Symphony (1867) Borodin appeared as a staunch supporter of the “new Russian music school”. In those same years a series of his romances of an epic and lyrical depot appeared.

The performance of the First Symphony (1869) brought the composer a public recognition. At the same time, two monumental compositions were planned – the opera Prince Igor and the Second Symphony, which V. Stasov later aptly called Bogatyrskaya (completed in 1876). A different, lyrical sphere of mood prevails in chamber works – First (1879) and Second (1881) string quartets, as well as romances of the early eighties (among them – elegy “For the shores of the distant homeland”). The last major works of Borodin are the program symphonic picture “In Central Asia” (1880) and the unfinished Third Symphony (1887).

Borodin died on February 15 (27), 1887, in St. Petersburg.


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Summary Alexander Porfirievich Borodin