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March 18, 1844 – June 21, 1908
Born in Russia
Nikolai Andreyevich Rimsky-Korsakov was born in the Russian town of Tikhvin. During his childhood, Nikolai enjoyed listening to Russian folk songs, church music, and opera.
When he was older, Nikolai followed his brother to the naval college in St. Petersburg. While he was there, he also studied music. Rimsky-Korsakov composed his first symphony while on a navy ship.
After he left the navy, Rimsky-Korsakov was asked to teach at the St. Petersburg Conservatory, which is now called named for him. Rimsky-Korsakov was also one of a group of five famous Russian composers known as “The Mighty Handful” (as in five fingers).
Rimsky-Korsakov wrote operas, choral music, chamber music, and works for piano. One of his most famous pieces is the Flight of the Bumblebee, from the opera Tsar Saltan. In the opera, this music is played when a prince disguises himself as bee.