Category: Wind Band >
Duration: 8' 00"
Play Audio Sample
Kikimora (pronounced with the stress on the second syllable) is less well known than Baba-Yaga but much more annoying as she can turn up in any house at any time. She can be benevolent, but only on her terms – if you keep the place tidy she’ll help, but if you let it go she’ll make it worse and keep you up all night whistling and spinning. She lives behind the stove and messes with men’s minds so that they are reluctant to enter the kitchen.
Lyadov’s treatment has a long, brooding introduction which paints a picture of her mountain childhood including a beautiful detail of her glass cradle featuring the glockenspiel. [This section could be shortened if you lack time.] The ensuing mayhem contains a few passages which look quite taxing, but they are really only effects which don’t require literal execution.
Here's a poetic version of the legend:-
She lives and grows, does Kikimora, with the wizard in the mountains.
From morn till eve his cat enthralls her, Kikimora, with tales of distant lands.
From dusk till dawn she rocks, does Kikimora, in a crystal cradle.
In just seven years she’s all grown up, is Kikimora.
She’s dark and oh-so skinny, that Kikimora;
Her head is thimble-tiny and her body but a straw.
She hammers and bangs from dawn till dusk, does Kikimora;
She whistles and spits from night till noon, does Kikimora;
From midnight to daylight
She spins a hempen flax
She twists a hempen yarn
She winds a silken warp
She stores up all her evil
In the minds of honest people
(translated by Ian Rae from Tales of the Russian People by I.P. Sakharov)