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Borodin, Alexander
Alexander Borodin
November 12, 1833 – February 27, 1887

Alexander Porfiryevich Borodin was a Russian scientist who worked as a doctor and a chemist, and only moonlighted as a composer on the side. Nonetheless, he was part of a group of composers called The Five who worked to craft a unique Russian style of music.

Borodin was the son of a Russian prince, and grew up in comfort. He received an extensive education that focused on chemistry, but also included piano lessons. His only formal musical training came from nationalist composer Mily Balakirev. With Balakirev, he worked on his first two symphonies, and then began his most recognized work, Prince Igor. That opera remained incomplete at his death. Borodin’s gained recognition abroad as Franz Liszt performed his work in Germany in 1880.

Borodin was not as prolific as some contemporaries since his accomplishments at chemistry dominated the majority of his life. Beside symphonies, and the notable opera Prince Igor, he also penned quartets and piano pieces.

Notable works:
Prince Igor

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