Opera Scotland

Bells The Bells - Choral Symphony, op35; Kolokola

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Sergey Rachmaninov (born Semyonovo, 1 April 1873; died Beverly Hills, 28 March 1943).


Konstantin Balmont (translator)


Poem The Bells by Edgar Allan Poe



First Performance: St Petersburg, 1913.

First Performance in UK: Liverpool 1921.

First Performance in Scotland: Edinburgh (Usher Hall), 8 September 1975 (possibly earlier).



Rachmaninov's attractive choral symphony based on a Russian translation of Poe, is in four movements, each representing a metal from which bells might be cast. Gold and Silver are naturally rather more lightweight than Bronze or Iron. The big orchestra, large mixed chorus and three soloists give the rapidly developing composer plenty of scope to let his imagination flow.

The Cast

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