From the recording The Sea & Sinbad's Ship

<p>I. The Sea and&nbsp;Sinbad's Ship <em>(Largo e maestoso &mdash; Lento &mdash; Allegro non troppo &mdash; Tranquillo)</em></p>
<p>Rimsky wrote a brief introduction that he intended for use with the score, as well as the program for the premiere:</p>
<p>"The Sultan Schariar, convinced that all women are false and faithless, vowed to put to death each of his wives after the first nuptial night. But the Sultana Sheherazade saved her life by entertaining her lord with fascinating tales, told <span style="color: #000000;"></span>consecutively for a thousand and one nights. The Sultan, consumed with curiosity, postponed from day to day the execution of his wife, and finally repudiated his bloody vow entirely."</p>
<p>The grim bass motif that opens the first movement is supposed to represent the domineering Sultan (see theme illustrated below). This theme emphasizes four notes of a descending <span style="color: #333333;"><a title="Whole tone scale" href="">whole tone scale</a></span>: E-D-C-A#.<a title="Chord (music)" href="">chords</a> in the <a title="Woodwind instrument" href="">woodwinds</a> reminiscent of the opening of <a title="Felix Mendelssohn" href="">Mendelssohn's</a> <em>Midsummer Night's Dream</em> we hear the <a title="Leitmotif" href="">leitmotif</a> that represents the character of the storyteller herself, <a title="Scheherazade" href="">Scheherazade</a>, his wife, who eventually succeeds at appeasing him with her stories. This theme is a tender, sensuously winding melody for <a title="Violin" href="">violin</a> <a title="Solo (music)" href="">solo</a>, accompanied by <a title="Harp" href="">harp</a>.</p>
<p>This movement is composed of various melodies and contains a general A B C A1 B C1 form. Although each section is highly distinctive, aspects of melodic figures carry through and unite them into a movement. Although similar in form to the classical symphony, the movement is more similar to the variety of motives used in one of his previous works Antar. Antar however, used genuine Arabic melodies as opposed to Rimsky-Korsakov&rsquo;s ideas of an oriental flavor.</p>


<p>This archival recording was made at a live performance November 6, 2010 in the Pierce College Performing Arts Theater with James Domine conducting the San Fernando Valley Symphony Orchestra.</p>