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Alexander Borodin

Biography

Born: 1833   Died: 1887   Country: Russia   Period: Romantic
Though far from prolific as a composer -- by day he was a scientist noted for his research on aldehydes -- Alexander Borodin nevertheless earned a secure place in the history of Russian music. As a creative spirit, Borodin was the most accomplished of the Russian nationalists composers. He had a particular gift for the distinctive stripe of exoticism so evident in his most frequently performed work, the Polovtsian Dances from the opera Prince Read more Igor.

The illegitimate son of a Georgian prince and a doctor's wife, Borodin enjoyed a comfortable upbringing. As a child he learned to play several instruments and tried his hand at composing, but other aptitudes directed his formal education. He studied chemistry at St. Petersburg's Medico-Surgical Academy, obtaining his doctorate in 1858 and pursuing further studies in Europe until 1862. Upon his return to Russia, he became a professor at his alma mater; but even as an academic career apparently loomed before him, he maintained a devotion to music.

Under the influence of Mily Balakirev, whom he met in 1862, Borodin became interested in applying elements of Russian folk music to works for the concert hall and stage. He joined a circle of like-minded composers -- Balakirev, Rimsky-Korsakov, Mussorgsky, and Cui -- famously dubbed "The Five" or "The Mighty Handful." The influence of Balakirev in particular is at once in evident in the Symphony No. 1 in E flat major (1867). Borodin began the much craggier Symphony No. 2 in B minor in 1869, the same year he commenced labor on his most important work, the opulent four-act opera Prince Igor. While it took Borodin more than five years to complete the symphony, work on Prince Igor dragged on for decades. Borodin, who had in the meantime completed a number of other works, left the opera unfinished at the time of his death. It was completed posthumously by Rimsky-Korsakov, a skillful craftsman and a particularly apt match for Borodin's colorful musical character, and Alexander Glazunov. Glazunov also completed the Symphony No. 3 in A minor, which the composer had been working on until the time of his death.

Aside from teaching chemistry and conducting research, Borodin helped found a series of medical courses for women in 1872. Such activities, as well as the poor health that plagued him in the 1880s, drained the energy that he might have devoted to composition. Still, as a part-time composer, Borodin jeft a significant oeuvre: more than a dozen worthy songs, miscellaneous piano pieces, two string quartets (the second of which contains a ravishing Nocturne often performed in an arrangement for string orchestra), and the popular tone poem In the Steppes of Central Asia (1880). He died while attending a ball in St. Petersburg on February 27, 1887. Read less
Borodin: Symphonies No 1-3 / Schwarz, Seattle Symphony
Release Date: 07/26/2011   Label: Naxos  
Catalog: 8572786   Number of Discs: 1
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Borodin: Symphonies 1, 2 & 3 / Gunzenhauser, Csr Symphony
Release Date: 02/15/1994   Label: Naxos  
Catalog: 8550238   Number of Discs: 1
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Borodin: Prince Igor - Highlights / Kuchar, Et Al
Release Date: 08/16/2005   Label: Naxos  
Catalog: 8557456   Number of Discs: 1
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The Russian Piano Quartet - Taneyev, Juon, Borodin
Release Date: 11/21/2000   Label: Sono Luminus  
Catalog: 93215   Number of Discs: 1
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Work: Prince Igor: Polovtsian Dances

Browse 76-100 of 115 Available Recordings
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  • 76.
    The Splendours Of Russian Opera
    Label: London/Decca Opera Gala Series   Catalog: 458216 Release Date: 10/11/2003   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Alexander Borodin,  Modest Mussorgsky,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Sergei Rachmaninov  ... 
    Performer:  Alexei Maslennikov,  Nicolai Ghiaurov,  Regina Resnik,  Bernd Weikl  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir Georg Solti,  Herbert von Karajan,  Edward Downes
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Chorus,  London Symphony Orchestra,  Vienna State Opera Chorus  ... 
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  • 77.
    Expanded Edition - Mussorgsky, Rimsky-Korsakov / Szell
    Label: Sony Classical Masterworks   Catalog: 93019 Release Date: 09/30/2003   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Modest Mussorgsky,  Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov,  Anatole Liadov,  Alexander Borodin
    Conductor:  George Szell
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
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  • 78.
    Plaintive Melody / Thomas Stacy, Kenneth Hamrick
    Label: Delos   Catalog: 3318 Release Date: 08/05/2003   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Alexander Borodin,  Heitor Villa-Lobos,  Ennio Morricone  ... 
    Performer:  Kenneth Hamrick,  Thomas Stacy
    CD: $17.99
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  • 79.
    Russian Orchestral Showpieces / André Cluytens, Et Al
    Label: Emi Classics Encore   Catalog: 74763 Release Date: 01/07/2003   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Alexander Borodin,  Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov,  Modest Mussorgsky
    Conductor:  André Cluytens
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Orchestre de la Société du Conservatoire Paris,  Philharmonia Orchestra
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  • 80.
    Karajan Festival
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 429436 Release Date: 10/29/2002   Number of Discs: 5
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms,  Alexander Borodin,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Bedrich Smetana  ... 
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 81.
    Russia's Greatest Composers
    Label: Inside Sounds   Catalog: 2898 Release Date: 10/08/2002   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov,  Alexander Borodin,  Modest Mussorgsky,  Mikhail Glinka  ... 
    Performer:  Various Artists
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  • 82.
    Caravan - The Ultimate Silk-road Album
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 472398 Release Date: 07/16/2002   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Carl Nielsen,  Alexander Borodin,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky  ... 
    Performer:  Michel Schwalbé
    Conductor:  Herbert Blomstedt,  Neeme Järvi,  Bernhard Klee,  Herbert von Karajan  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  San Francisco Symphony Chorus,  San Francisco Symphony Orchestra,  Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra  ... 
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  • 83.
    Smetana: The Moldau; Dvorák, Brahms, Borodin, Liszt / Barenboim, Et Al
    Label: Dg Galleria   Catalog: 415851 Release Date: 12/21/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Alexander Borodin,  Johannes Brahms,  Antonín Dvorák,  Franz Liszt  ... 
    Conductor:  Daniel Barenboim
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chicago Symphony Orchestra
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  • 84.
    Eloquence - Invitation To The Dance - Ballet Music / Karajan
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 469683 Release Date: 09/18/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Carl Maria von Weber,  Alexander Borodin,  Giuseppe Verdi,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky  ... 
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 85.
    Vodka & Caviar - The Ultimate Russian Spectacular
    Label: Delos   Catalog: 3288 Release Date: 09/11/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Alexander Borodin,  Aram Khachaturian,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Performer:  Dmitry Khakamov
    Conductor:  Constantine Orbelian
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Russian Philharmonic Orchestra,  Spiritual Revival Choir of Moscow
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  • 86.
    Tchaikovsky, Borodin, Mussorgsky, Et Al / Hollreiser
    Label: Vox Allegretto   Catalog: 8022 Release Date: 07/30/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Alexander Borodin,  Modest Mussorgsky,  Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Conductor:  Heinrich Hollreiser
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna State Opera Chorus,  Vienna Symphony Orchestra
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  • 87.
    Borodin: Symphony No 2, Etc / Kubelik, Vienna Philharmonic
    Label: Emi Seraphim   Catalog: 74276 Release Date: 02/27/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Alexander Borodin
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan,  André Cluytens,  Paul Strauss,  Constantin Silvestri  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  Liège Philharmonic Orchestra,  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 88.
    A Night At The Ballet
    Label: Lifestyles   Catalog: 215005 Release Date: 01/16/2001   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Alexander Borodin,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Mikhail Glinka,  Camille Saint-Saëns  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Orchestra
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  • 89.
    The Russian Piano Quartet - Taneyev, Juon, Borodin
    Label: Sono Luminus   Catalog: 93215 Release Date: 11/21/2000   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Paul Juon,  Alexander Borodin,  Sergei Taneyev
    Performer:  Mahlon Darlington,  George Work,  William David,  Jonathan Sturm
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ames Piano Quartet
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  • 90.
    The Monet Collection - Romantic Moments
    Label: Lifestyles   Catalog: 315020 Release Date: 11/20/2000   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Alexander Borodin,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Mikhail Glinka,  Sergei Rachmaninov  ... 
    Performer:  Nikolai Portnov,  Irina Snegova,  Andrey Ryazanov,  Juriy Ivchenko  ... 
    Conductor:  Jansug Kakhidze,  Leonid Malyshev,  Viacheslav Suvorov,  Sergei Evgenin  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Tbilisi Symphony Orchestra,  St. Petersburg Festival Symphony Orchestra,  St. Petersburg Chamber Orchestra "Muse"  ... 
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  • 91.
    Merit - Stokowski Conducts Music From Russia Vol 3
    Label: Music & Arts Programs Of America   Catalog: 4847 Release Date: 09/26/2000   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Alexander Borodin,  Anatole Liadov,  Alexander Scriabin,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky  ... 
    Conductor:  Leopold Stokowski
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 92.
    Borodin, Mussorgsky, Et Al / Heinrich Hollreiser, Vienna So
    Label: Tuxedo Music   Catalog: 1009 Release Date: 04/15/2000   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Alexander Borodin,  Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Modest Mussorgsky
    Conductor:  Heinrich Hollreiser
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Symphony Orchestra
    On sale! $13.98
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  • 93.
    Virtuoso / Rolf Smedvig
    Label: Telarc   Catalog: 80550 Release Date: 01/25/2000   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Alexander Borodin,  Tomaso Albinoni,  Manuel de Falla,  Rafael Mendez  ... 
    Performer:  Eric Ruske,  Rolf Smedvig,  Richard Jensen,  Sam Pilafian  ... 
    Conductor:  Jahja Ling
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Empire Brass,  Scottish Chamber Orchestra
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  • 94.
    Fawkes, Richard: The History Of Classical Music / Robert Powell
    Label: Naxos Audio Books   Catalog: 4140 Release Date: 08/31/1999   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  Anonymous,  Hildegard of Bingen,  Alfonso X (El Sabio),  Guillaume de Machaut  ... 
    Performer:  Jennifer Purvis,  Kasia Elsner,  Simon Weir,  Richard Fawkes  ... 
    Conductor:  Nicholas Kraemer,  Stephen Gunzenhauser,  Hanspeter Gmür,  Barry Wordsworth  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Nova Schola Gregoriana,  In Dulci Jubilo Children's Choir,  Oxford Camerata  ... 
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  • 95.
    Romantic Russia / Georg Solti, London So, Et Al
    Label: London/Decca Legends   Catalog: 460977 Release Date: 07/01/1999   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Alexander Borodin,  Modest Mussorgsky,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Mikhail Glinka
    Conductor:  Sir Georg Solti
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Chorus,  London Symphony Orchestra,  Orchestre de la Société du Conservatoire Paris
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  • 96.
    Rimsky-Korsakov: Scheherazade; Borodin / Beecham, RPO
    Label: Emi Great Recordings Of The Century   Catalog: 66998 Release Date: 05/04/1999   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Alexander Borodin,  Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov
    Performer:  Steven Staryk
    Conductor:  Sir Thomas Beecham
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Beecham Choral Society,  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 97.
    Borodin: Symphonies 1, 2 & 3, Etc / Davis, Toronto So
    Label: Sony Classical Essential Classics   Catalog: 62406 Release Date: 04/16/1996   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Alexander Borodin
    Conductor:  Sir Andrew Davis,  Leonard Bernstein,  Saulius Sondeckis
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Toronto Symphony Orchestra,  New York Philharmonic,  St. Petersburg Camerata of the Hermitage Museum
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  • 98.
    Nikolai Malko - Borodin, Rimsky-korsakov, Liadov, Glazunov
    Label: Testament   Catalog: 1062 Release Date: 03/01/1996   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Alexander Borodin,  Anatole Liadov,  Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov
    Conductor:  Nicolai Malko
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra
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  • 99.
    Borodin: Symphony 2, Polovtsian Dances;  Mussorgsky
    Label: Emi Seraphim   Catalog: 69021 Release Date: 10/17/1995   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Alexander Borodin,  Modest Mussorgsky
    Conductor:  William Steinberg,  Constantin Silvestri,  André Cluytens,  Herbert von Karajan  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra,  Philharmonia Orchestra,  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
    CD: $4.99
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  • 100.
    Borodin: Symphony No 2, Etc / Rozhdestvensky, Stockholm Po
    Label: Chandos   Catalog: 9386 Release Date: 09/19/1995   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Alexander Borodin
    Conductor:  Gennadi Rozhdestvensky
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra
    CD: $18.99
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