Kalinnikov, Vasili (Sergeievich)

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Kalinnikov, Vasili (Sergeievich)

Kalinnikov, Vasili (Sergeievich), Russian composer; b. Voin, near Mtzensk, Jan. 13, 1866; d.Yalta, Jan. 11, 1901. He studied in Orel. In 1884 he enrolled at the Moscow Cons., but had to leave it a year later because of inability to pay; he then studied the bassoon at the Music School of the Moscow Phil. Soc. which provided free tuition. He earned his living by playing bassoon in theater orchs., and also studied composition with A. Ilyinsky and Blaramberg. While still a student, he composed his first work, the symphonic poem The Nymphs (Moscow, Dec. 28, 1889). He later wrote another symphonic poem, The Cedar and the Palm (1897-98), incidental music for Tsar Boris (Moscow, Feb. 1, 1899), and the prelude to the unfinished opera In the Year 1812 (1899-1900). In 1895 he completed his most successful work, the Sym. in G minor (Kiev, Feb. 20, 1897); a 2nd sym., in A major (Kiev, March 12, 1898), was not as successful. He also wrote a cantata, John of Damascus (1890; not extant), songs, and piano pieces.


V. Paskhalov, V.S. K.: Life and Works (Moscow and Leningrad, 1938; 2nd ed., aug., 1951); V. Kiselyo, ed., V. K.: Letters, Documents, Materials (2 vols., Moscow, 1959).

—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire