Arts & Entertainment

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An Evening of Russian Music by the Choral Arts Society of Washington, Kennedy Center Concert Hall, Sunday, Oct. 28, 7:30 p.m.

Sergei Rachmaninoff’s haunting composition, “The Bells,” is the highlight of this program that also includes three selections from “the golden age of Russian opera.” They are the coronation scene from Mussorgsky’s “Boris Gudonov,” the ballroom scene from Tchaikovsky’s “Eugene Onegin,” and the final scene by Prokofiev of the film, “Alexander Nevsky.” But it’s “The Bells,” a work composed in 1913 based on the Edgar Allen Poe poem of the same name, which stands as one of the most impressive works of the era, taking the four stanzas of the poem and turning them into four movements for a large symphony orchestra, three soloists and a chorus. Each highlights one of four kinds of bells that represent four stages of life – birth, marriage, daily tensions and death. In addition to tickets, also available on the Choral Arts Society web site ( is a printable study guide to the concert.