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Stravinsky: Les Noces

Can you guess this piece? Here’s a hint: let’s hope for a riot-less wedding!

Even though Stravinsky’s father sang principal Bass at the Maryinsky Theatre in St. Petersburg, young Igor showed no particular inclination towards composition. This changed when at age 19 he met Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov. By this time Stravinsky was already engaged in law studies at the University, yet he also began taking weekly composition lessons from Rimsky-Korsakov. During the years from 1910-1920, Stravinsky solidified his early style of Russian “nationalism”, and it was during this period that he sketched out Les Noces. The precise instrumentation of the work gave Stravinsky some trouble, and it wasn’t until 1923 that he decided on the final orchestration of four pianos and percussion that lends the work so much of its flavor.

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