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Les Cosaques du Don - Serge Jaroff

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Biography

For more than half a century the choir of the Don Cossacks has demonstrated the continuity of the great Russian song tradition in concert halls throughout the western world. The history of this extraordinary ensemble goes back to 1921, shortly after the October Revolution and the First World War. A group of Russian refugees faithful to the cause of the Czar were gathered in a Turkish camp at Tschilingir near Constantinople. They calmed their chagrin by meeting in the evenings to sing the old airs of their native land and the great traditional prayers of the Orthodox Church. The moving spirit was a fine musician named Serge Jaroff, experienced in choral singing techniques. This was the origin of the Don Cossacks. Guided by their director, this little group of amateurs, soon joined by dancers, became an internationally famous ensemble, representatives of Russian song in the free world.

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