1787 Tobolsk -1851 Moscou. The Russian composer Alexander Aliabiev was a leading composer for the stage in the first half of the 19th. century. Most of his output consists of "opera-vaudeville", situation comedy in verse that an actor could sing, if sufficiently skilled, or simply recite to the music. Between 1822 and 1836 he wrote the music for some 23 of these works. Even the stage piece considered to be his first opera is only slightly more elaborate than his vaudevilles. Aliabiev did write 5 true Romantic operas, though none of them saw the stage in their entirety. Most saw partial performance in concert and parts of each became well known. These operas were a large influence on Aliabiev's contemporaries, particularly Alexander Dargomyzhsky. Among these works are Burya (The Tempest), after Shakespear, and Ribak i rusalka (The Fisherman and the Mermaid), an early setting of Pushkin's poem Rusalka.