Iain Farrington

Pianist, organist, composer, arranger

Nicolai Rimsky-Korsakov: The Flight of the Bumblebee

for Chamber Ensemble


Nicolai Rimsky-Korsakov (1844-1908) was a prolific composer of operas, finishing The Tale of Tsar Sultan in 1900. The Flight of the Bumblebee is the most well known passage in the score, and has been arranged for numerous instrumental forces.  In the opera, the piece occurs when Prince Gvidon agrees to be turned into a bumblebee by a magical swan, whose life he had saved. This arrangement for chamber orchestra follows the basic thematic structure of the work, but with new harmonies, rhythms and instrumentation.


Listen to a performance of this arrangement here


Available to purchase from Aria Editions here


Instrumentation: flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon, horn, trumpet, trombone, violin 1, violin 2, viola, cello, double bass, xylophone (13 players)