1812 Overture

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1812 Overture

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The Year 1812, Festival overture in E flat major, Op. 49, popularly known as the 1812 Overture (Russian: Торжественная увертюра 1812-ого года) is a classical overture written by Russian composer Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky in 1880. The piece was written to commemorate Russia’s defense of Moscow against Napoleon’s advancing Grande Armée at the Battle of Borodino in 1812. The Overture debuted in the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour in Moscow on August 20, 1882 (in the Gregorian or NS calendar; the date in the Julian or OS calendar was August 8). The overture is best known for its climactic volley of cannon fire and ringing chimes.