World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Nikolai Tcherepnin

Nikolai Tcherepnin

Nikolai Nikolayevich Tcherepnin (Russian: Николай Николаевич Черепнин; May 15 [O.S. May 3] 1873 – 26 June 1945) was a Russian composer, pianist, and conductor. He was born in Saint Petersburg and studied under Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov at the Saint Petersburg Conservatory. He conducted for the first Paris season of Sergei Diaghilev's Ballets Russes.


  • Life 1
  • Works 2
    • Opera 2.1
    • Ballet 2.2
    • Choral 2.3
    • Orchestral 2.4
    • Chamber Music 2.5
    • Orchestrations and Completions 2.6
  • References 3
  • External links 4
  • Sources 5


Nikolai Tcherepnin was born in 1873 to a well-known and wealthy physician of the same name. The elder Nikolai moved in elite circles of artists including

  • Tcherepnin, Nikolay by Christopher Palmer, in 'The New Grove Dictionary of Opera', ed. Stanley Sadie (London, 1992) ISBN 0-333-73432-7
  • Savenko, Svetlana, et al. "Tcherepnin: (1) Nikolay Tcherepnin". 2002. New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians. 7 June 2008. [2]


External links

  1. ^ Nikolai's biography on the Tcherepnin Society Website
  2. ^ See article on the Tcherepnin family in the Grove Dictionary
  3. ^ Beate Schroder-Nauenburg, Der Eintritt des Judischen in die Welt der Kunstmusik, Wiesbande, 2007, p. 151
  4. ^ a b Savenko, Grove Music Online
  5. ^ "News of the Music World" (PDF). New York Times. October 8, 1911. Retrieved 2008-07-16. 
  6. ^ Naxos's biography


  • Musorgsky: Sorochinsky Fair (1923)
  • Sokolovsky: The Miller-Wizard, Cheat and Matchmaker (1925)

Orchestrations and Completions

  • Lyrical Poem, for string quartet (1898)
  • Melody, for violin and piano (1902)
  • 5 Pieces for Piano (1904)
  • 6 Horn Quartets (1910)
  • The Alphabet in Pictures, for Piano (1910)
  • Cadence fantastique, for Violin and Piano on YouTube (1915)

Chamber Music

  • La princesse lointaine (prelude to a play by E. Rostand), Op. 4 (1896)
  • Macbeth (after act 4, scene 1), Op. 12 (1902)
  • From Land to Land (1903)
  • Piano Concerto in C# minor, Op. 30 (1905)
  • Mar'ya Morevna (symphonic poem) (1909)
  • The Enchanted Kingdom on YouTube (1910)
  • 6 Musical Illustrations to Pushkin’s ‘Tale about the Fisherman and the Fish’ (1917)
  • Destiny (1938)


  • 2 Choruses (1899)
  • The Song of Sappho (1899)
  • The Descent of the Virgin Mary to Hell (Oratorio, 1934) on YouTube


  • Le Pavillon d'Armide (1907)
  • Narcisse et Echo (1911)
  • The Masque of the Red Death (1915)
  • Bacchus (1922)
  • A Magical Russian Fairytale (1923)
  • The Romance of the Mummy (1924)


  • The Matchmaker (1930)
  • Vanka the Steward (1933)



He was the father of the composer and pianist Alexander Tcherepnin.

From 1905 to 1917, he was principal of the conservatory of St. Petersburg, where he taught conducting. In 1918 he was invited to take the post of director of the National Conservatory of Paris and lived there for the rest of his life. While in France, he worked with Anna Pavlova and her ballet troupe as composer and conductor (1922–4) and made concert tours around Europe and the United States but abandoned his concert career in 1933 because of a deterioration in his hearing. In 1925 he founded the Russian Conservatory in Paris and served as its director for a number of years (1925–9 and 1938–45). In 1926 he became a member of the board of trustees of the Belyayev publishing house, where he later became president from 1937 until his death in 1945.[4]

In 1907, during his time at the Conservatory, he wrote possibly his most famous work, the ballet Le Pavillon d'Armide. Two years later, Tcherepnin conducted the ballet at the premiere performance of Diaghilev's legendary Ballets Russes. He conducted for the entire first season and returned to conduct multiple times over the next five years. He conducted performances with the Ballets Russes in Berlin, Monte Carlo, Paris, Rome, and the Royal Opera House at Covent Garden in London.[5] In addition to his professorship and his commitments with the Ballet, in 1908, he became conductor at the Mariinsky Theatre. At this post, he directed the Paris premiere of Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov's opera The Golden Cockerel.[6]

In 1902 he became the regular conductor of the Russian Symphony Concerts and later made guest appearances with the Russian Musical Society, the Moscow Philharmonic Society, the Siloti Concerts and Ivan Vasilenko’s Historic Concerts as well conducting at the Mariinsky Theatre (1906–9). A member of the Belyayev circle, he was also involved with the Kruzhok sovremennoy muzïki (‘The Contemporary Music Circle’) and worked with the Mir iskusstva (‘World of Art’) movement.[4] Tcherepnin was a friend of the musicologist Alexander Ossovsky.

At his father's insistence, Nikolai earned a law degree, though during this time he composed steadily. In 1895 he graduated with his degree in law from the University of Saint Petersburg. In 1898, he earned a degree in composition under Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov and a degree in piano under K.K. Fan-Arkh. His talents and high family status earned him a job as the orchestral teacher at the Court Chapel in 1899. For six years he taught there before returning to the St. Petersburg Conservatory to teach there. During his 13-year tenure (from 1909 onward as professor) he taught many notable students, including Sergei Prokofiev, Aleksandr Gauk, Yuri Shaporin[2] and Lazare Saminsky.[3]


This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.