Sputnik Music Group - Playlist

July 26, 2014   -   "Russia 20th Century"

This month's program featured Russian composers who lived in the 20th century. We heard many very interesting works that you would not likely hear played on KUSC.

Aram Khachaturian   (1903 - 1978)
Michail Ippolitov-Ivanov   (1859 - 1935)
Sergei Prokofiev   (1891 - 1953)
Dimitri Shostakovich   (1906 - 1975)
Georgy Sviridov   (1915 - 1998)
Rodion Shchedrin   (1932 - )

Disk 1   Khachaturian:   -   Triumful Poem
Ippolitov-Ivanov:   -   Caucasian Sketches (complete)
Khachaturian:   -   Symphony #3
Total     68:45 m:s
Ippolitov-Ivanov gives us a bit of a link to the past, since his "Caucasian Sketches"
dates from 1896. It's somewhat fitting that the cd had his work with that of Khachaturian,
since the latter composer has Caucasian roots, being ethnically Armenian.
Disk 2   Prokofiev:   -   Semyon Kotko (a True Son of the Revolution)
    Symphonic Suite from the opera
Prokofiev:   -   The Gambler
    Four portraits from the opera
Total     60:56 m:s
Disk 3   Shostakovich:   -   The Song of the Forests
Shostakovich:   -   The Sun Shines Over the Motherland
Total     49:54 m:s
With Prokofiev's "Semyon Kotko , a True Son of the Revolution," we moved into the era
of the arts being subjugated to the Soviet state. Though Shostakovich wrote many works
vastly superior to "The Song of the Forests" and "The Sun Shines Over the Motherland,"
I chose these two choral works because they represent the nadir of this trend. In the first
piece Shostakovich even hailed Stalin as "the great gardener" of Russia.
Disk 4   Sviridov:   -   Five Choruses to Lyrics by Russian Poets
Sviridov:   -   Poem in Memory of Sergei Esenin
Total     67:11 m:s
Sviridov's "Poem in Memory of Sergei Esenin" is noteworthy particularly because Esenin's
poetry was banned by both Stalin and Kruschev. Esenin was moody, alcoholic, bisexual,
and married five times in his short life. He killed himself when he was about 30. One of
his brief marriages was to the American dancer, Isadora Duncan. She knew practically
no Russian, and Esenin knew little English. Their brief marriage was a matter of biology
and chemistry. Esenins' dissolute life didn't fit the prudishness of theSoviet state.
Disk 5   Shchedrin:   -   Piano Concerto #1
Shchedrin:   -   Piano Concerto #2
Shchedrin:   -   Piano Concerto #3
Total     66:49 m:s
Shchedrin is still with us. Thus, i put his work at the end of the evening.
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