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Don Kosaken Chor

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Don Kosaken Chor was a group of former officers of the Russian Imperial Army, discovered singing in Istanbul, where they had fled after the defeat of their army unit in the Crimea. They made their formal concert debut in Vienna in 1923, led by their founder, conductor and composer, Serge Jaroff.

Fifty years of the Don Cossack Choir, 50 years of undiminished popularity, 50 years of world success!
This means absolute dedication to the highest standards of performance, to power, greatness, but also a huge expenditure of energy and artistic effort, to remain on the lonely heights of fame with youthful vigour for half a century.

The choir, founded in 1921 in the Turkish barracks of Chilingir near Istanbul, with Serge Jaroff always leading it as conductor and arranger, is something unique in concert history.

Who is this Serge Jaroff, who exercises such a compulsive fascination when he conducts his choir?
Cossack cadet leading a squadron of cavalry in the Russian civil war? World-famous conductor of a unique choir? Pupil and friend of contemporary Russian composers, himself the creator of considerable compositions?
Serge Jaroff is all this and much more. Choral singing is his empire, and he controls all the registers of this organ of human voices with virtuoso skill.

Serge Jaroff was born in a small town in the district of Kostroma in north-east Russia. At the age of five he already sang in the local church choir. His father, a merchant, sent him to school at the age of seven. At ten he passed the entrance examination of the Synodal Music School in Moscow.

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