Modest Petrovich Mussorgsky (Russian: Моде́ст Петро́вич Му́соргский, Modest Petrovič Musorgskij), also Modeste, Moussorgsky (and see also Модест Петрович Мусоргский) (March 9/21, 1839 – March 16/28, 1881), one of five Russian composers known as The Mighty Handful or The Five, they were: Mily Balakirev (the leader), César Cui, Modest Petrovich Mussorgsky, Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov, and Alexander Borodin.), was an innovator of Russian music. He strove to achieve a uniquely Russian musical identity, often in deliberate defiance of the established conventions of Western Music. Many of his major works were inspired by Russian history, Russian folklore, and other national themes, including the great music drama Boris Godunov, the orchestral tone poem A Night on the Bare Mountain, and the piano suite Pictures at an Exhibition. For many years Mussorgsky's works were mainly known in versions revised or completed by other composers. Many of his most important compositions have recently come into their own in their original forms, and some of the original scores are now also available.
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