Mikhail Glinka

Mikhail Glinka was the founder of the nationalist school of Russian composers and is often regarded as the father of Russian classical music. Glinka's compositions were an important influence on future Russian composers, notably the members of the Mighty Five, who took Glinka's lead and produced a distinctive Russian style of music.

Glinka is best known for the operas A Life for the Tsar and Ruslan and Ludmila. Growing up amid a family of landed gentry, however, much of his early work was of a very different nature, namely chamber music intended for performance in more modest settings. His works range from the Variations on a Theme by Mozart, written when the composer was just eighteen and already demonstrating the skill with which he would repeatedly and creatively re”work the musical motifs of others’ works; the Viola Sonata, an unfinished and yet unintentionally rich contribution to the scant repertory for the instrument; and the Serenade on Themes from Donizetti’s Anna Bolena, an intriguing and unusual arrangement for a selection of deep”timbred instruments that nonetheless succeeds in bringing out the individual melodic voice of each one.