Compositions
Modest Mussorgsky

(1839 - 1881)
Born into a prosperous land-owning family on a country estate 300 miles south of St Petersburg, Modest Musorgsky first appeared on the Russian musical scene as an elegant 17-year-old army offcer. A year later, in 1857, he was taken under the wing of Mily Balakirev. Like the other composers who joined Balakirev’s circle and became known collectively as ‘The Mighty Handful’, Rimsky-Korsakov, Borodin and César Cui, Musorgsky gained from the master’s enthusiasms yet missed out on a systematic training in harmony and counterpoint, a defciency which his idiosyncratic genius turned to good use but which was always to be held against him. Musorgsky’s early works, written under Balakirev’s influence, already show a striking ability to give a visual image a strong musical form: the Intermezzo in modo classico for piano of 1862, later orchestrated, was inspired by a winter scene with a group of peasants plunging and tumbling through snow drifts.

Composition timpani and percussion requirements

Boris Godunov (arr Shostakovich)

Timpani + 5 percussion
4 unpitched bells, snare drum, orchestral bass drum, clash cymbals, suspended cymbal, tambourine, triangle, tam tam, xylophone, glockenspiel
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Boris Godunov - Coronation (arr R-Korsakov)

Timpani + 4 percussion
Glockenspiel, tam tam, orchestral bass drum, clash cymbals, triangle
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Night on a Bare Mountain (arr R-Korsakov)

Timpani
Int'l 32/29/26 Prem 32/30/28
3 percussion
D tubular bell, orchestral bass drum, clash cymbals, suspended cymbal, tam tam
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Pictures at an Exhibition (arr Ravel)

Timpani
Int'l 32/29/26 Prem 32/30/28
5 percussion
Low Eb bass bell, glockenspiel, xylophone, tam tam, snare drum, orchestral bass drum, clash cymbals, triangle, ratchet, whip, suspended cymbal
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