Modest Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition is a suite of ten movements composed for piano and later arranged for orchestra by Maurice Ravel. Written in a whirlwind of grief and remembrance following the untimely death of friend and artist Viktor Hartmann, this piece is a favorite for many, perhaps because of its rich and universal backstory and visual makeup. The piece is marked by a familiar and intermittent promenade theme offered in variations of mood and modulation. This musical theme that many recognize is a musical allusion to a stroll and contemplation that brings a viewer from one painting to another. Among the ten movements listed below Mussorgsky references some of 400 paintings in Viktor Hartmann’s collection in specific and composite ways.

The recording you will hear of this is a private recording of Yelena Beriyeva, performing the entire suite on November 5, 2016 in Malden. She performed alongside an exhibit of this artwork and to projections of the art that she pulled together to be projected during the concert. The ten movements are interspersed with the Promenade theme, which also begins the suite.