Three measures from the second theme of the second movement. Notated in black ink on ivory card stock with autograph titling and date of 30 December 1907, St. Petersburg. Small oblong octavo (70 x 108 mm).
Mounted on a taupe mat on heavy gray silk-bordered cardboard below a bust-length color reproduction painting of the composer. Overall size 260 x 150 mm.
Composed in 1888, Sheherazade, Rimsky-Korsakov's characteristically colorful orchestral work, was inspired by the fantastical One Thousand and One Nights (The Arabian Nights), a collection of Middle Eastern folk tales in Arabic compiled during the Islamic Golden Age (the 8th-13th centuries) and first translated into English in ca. 1706-21.
"Russian orientalism received its best-known expression in Sheherazade (1888). The work is based on A Thousand and One Nights, the story of the sultana Sheherazade, who keeps her husband, the sultan Shakriar, from his intention of killing her by telling him stories for one thousand and one nights. The encounter between barbarous despotism and feminine seduction ... - a contrast that Rimsky-Korsavkov's work emphasizes from the start - renders the story an oriental paradigm par excellence." Maas: A History of Russian Music, p. 175.
The work was adapted for ballet by Diaghilev's Ballets Russes, premiering in Paris at the Opéra Garnier on 4 June 1910 to Rimsky-Korsakov's music, with dramatic choreography by Michel Fokine, striking sets and costumes by Léon Bakst, and iconic dancers Vaslav Nijinsky and Ida Rubinstein.
A fine example from one of the composer's most popular works and the one with which he is most closely identified, penned just under six months before he died on 21 June 1908.
Price: $6,800.00 other currencies