By Michael Mishra
Adopting a two-books-in-one layout. The Shostakovich Companion combines a full-length, single-author exam of the existence and compositional evolution of the Soviet Union's most famed composer; and a symposium during which quite a few analytical concepts is utilized to chose Shostakovich works and genres. this is often the 1st complete English-language publication in twenty-five years during which the first emphasis is on musical matters, and the secondary emphasis is at the biographical and much-debated political issues.
The The Shostakovich Companion is split into 4 elements. half I considers the hermeneutic thoughts which were utilized to Shostakovich's tune, in addition to a number of the controversies surrounding his existence and his courting to Soviet politics. half II includes the book's important life-and-works dialogue, uniting a entire exam of Shostakovich's compositional evolution with an entire account of his lifestyles. Coming from various authors, the chapters partially III reveal a cross-section of analytical thoughts which may usefully be dropped at undergo upon Shostakovich's song. those diversity from literary and cinematically-based easy methods to the extra conventional varieties of musical research. half IV considers 3 self reliant yet the most important elements of Shostakovich's existence: his contributions to the Soviet movie undefined, his profession as a pianist, and his legacy and impression as a teacher.
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Additional info for A Shostakovich Companion
Ros tropovich's wife, the soprano Galina Vishnevskaya, has stated her interpretation of this coda, one that also seems to describe Rostropovich's performance: Beneath the triumphant blare of the trumpets, beneath the endlessly repeated A in the violins, like nails being pounded into one's brain-we hear a desecrated Russia, violated by her own sons, wailing and writhing in agony, nailed to the Cross, bemoaning the fact that she will survive her defilement. 9 6 *** If the musical debates during the 1 980s focused on the meaning of certain key Shostakovich works and how that meaning might be brought out in performance, the debates during the 1 990s were dominated by Ian MacDonald's book, The New Shostakovich, which took the by-then accepted notion of Shostakovich as a chronicler of his times and controversially used it as a springboard for an unashamedly metaphorical approach to musical commentary.
Ever seen. He went through absolute hell under Stalin . . We would be there talking, and then he'd be very warm and friendly, and suddenly the head of what they call the Compos er's Union would appear in the background and immediately he'd freeze up like that. I felt very badly and awfully touched, because i liked him. 9 (Roger Sessions, American composer) His face was a bag of tics and grimaces: he would either twitch his lower lip, or unex pectedly blink, or keep correcting his glasses or stroke his hair, which, as a result, was in a state of permanent chaos.
Shostakovich initially opposed the revisions, since the topic of compli city was at the very heart of the movement, but he eventually conceded in order to ensure the survival of the Symphony and this, his most public indictment · against anti-Semitism. Such compromise was, of course, the very thing that was railed against in the Symphony's finale ("A Career") . ) , the composer appears to point the finger at least partly at himself and the compromises that he had had to make over the course of his career, a piece of self-indictment seemingly reinforced by his subsequent re-use of the same music in his autobiographical skit, Preface to the Complete Collection of my WOrks, and Brief Reflectiom on This Preface ( 1 966; see Chapter 9) .
A Shostakovich Companion by Michael Mishra
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