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Russian Personalities

People well-known in art, sport, film, fashion

Category Archive: Music

Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov – great composer

Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov – great composer

Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov – great composer


Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov was a prominent Russian composer, conductor, and pedagogue, a member of the Russian Mighty Five. He contributed to the formation of a Russian national music in the nineteenth century.
Nikolai Andreevich Rimsky-Korsakov was born on March 6, 1844 in the town of Tikhvin near Novgorod. His father had served prominently in the provincial government. At the age of 12 the boy entered the St. Petersburg Naval Academy. There he took violoncello lessons and piano lessons from Feodor Kanille. The teacher encouraged his efforts at composition. In 1861 Kanille introduced the young cadet to the Balakirev Circle, a circle of talented dilettantes. Later its prominent members – Balakirev, Rimsky-Korsakov, Aleksandr Borodin, Modest Mussorgsky, and Cesar Cui, became known as Mighty Handful or Mighty Five.
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Aram Khachaturyan – Soviet composer

Aram Khachaturyan - Soviet composer

Aram Khachaturyan – Soviet composer


Aram Khachaturyan was a Soviet composer, conductor, public figure, teacher. Khachaturyan is one of the greatest composers of the XX century. He is the author of 3 ballets, 3 symphonies, 6 concerts, a huge number of vocal, choral, instrumental and program music, music for films and theater productions, as well as music of the Armenian National SSR Hymn (1944). He was Hero of Socialist Labor (1973), People’s Artist of the USSR (1954). He was awarded the Lenin Prize (1959), four Stalin Prizes (1941, 1943, 1946, 1950), the USSR State Prize (1971) and the State Prize of the Armenian SSR (1965). In 1963 Aram became Academician of the Academy of Sciences of the Armenian SSR. From 1951 to 1978 he was a professor of the Moscow State Conservatory. In 1965, Khachaturyan was awarded a title of Doctor of Arts.
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Alexander Gradsky – composer and singer

Alexander Gradsky – composer and singer

Alexander Gradsky – composer and singer


Alexander Gradsky is a Soviet and Russian singer, multi-instrumentalist, songwriter, poet, and composer. He is one of the founders of Russian rock, Honored Artist of Russia (1997), laureate of the State Prize of the Russian Federation (1999), People’s Artist of Russia (1999), People’s Artist of the Pridnestrovian Moldavian Republic (2014).
Alexander Borisovich Gradsky was born on November 3, 1949 in Kopeisk, Chelyabinsk Oblast, RSFSR, USSR. His father Boris Abramovich Fradkin (1926-2013) was a mechanical engineer. In 1957 the family returned to Moscow. His mother, Tamara Gradskaya (1929-1963), a graduate of GITIS, had great influence on the development of the future musician.
In 1965, he founded Soviet rock group The Slavs and a year later, in 1966, Skomorokhs, which brought him the greatest popularity.
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Alexander Scriabin – Russian composer

Alexander Scriabin – Russian composer

Alexander Scriabin – Russian composer

Alexander Scriabin was a Russian composer and pianist. He was a striking representative of the early modern school of Russian music.
Alexander Nikolayevich Scriabin was born on December 25, 1871 (according to other sources on January 6, 1872) in Moscow. He was born into the family of the Moscow University student, Nikolai Scriabin, who later became a prominent diplomat and state councilor. His mother, Lyubov Petrovna, was a talented pianist graduated with honors from the St. Petersburg Conservatory. After an early death of the spouse Nikolai married Olga Fernandez. They had five children: Nicholai, Vladimir, Xenia, Andrei, Cyril.
Since childhood Alexander studied piano and, at the age of 14, took theory and composition instruction from Alexander Taneev.
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Lev Termen – inventor of thereminovox

Lev Termen – inventor of thereminovox

Lev Termen – inventor of thereminovox


Lev Termen, Russian and Soviet inventor, invented musical instrument called the thereminovox and demonstrated it to the first ruler of the USSR. In 1947 he became a winner of the Stalin Prize for his outstanding invention.
Lev Termen (known as Leon Therimin in the West) was born on August 15, 1896 in St. Petersburg. He was born into a noble Orthodox family with French Huguenot roots (in French his name was written as a Theremin). As a child Lev was very interested in physics and electricity. He studied piano and cello at the conservatory in Leningrad, but afterwards went to university to study physics and astronomy.
Inspired by the Bolshevik revolution in 1917, when everyone was interested in new things, Termen wanted to invent a musical instrument that would not use any mechanical energy, like the conductor of an orchestra, who only moves his hands.
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Peter Tchaikovsky – outstanding Russian composer

Peter Tchaikovsky – outstanding Russian composer

Peter Tchaikovsky – outstanding Russian composer

Peter Tchaikovsky, an outstanding Russian composer, was born in 1840 in Votkinsk. His family was rich and sent him to special schools. He was fond of music since his early childhood. His mother sang him beautiful songs and taught him to play the piano. Tchaikovsky went to a university and studied law. But at the age of 23, he decided to give his life to music. He studied music in Saint Petersburg and was the best pupil of Anton Rubinshtein. When he was 26, he wrote his first symphony.
When the Moscow Conservatoire was founded Pyotr llyich became a professor there. Tchaikovsky worked in almost all musical genres. He created wonderful music: ten operas, three ballets, six symphonies, seven large symphonic poems and many other musical pieces.
Tchaikovsky became a famous and successful composer. But he did not live a happy or exciting life. He was very shy and lived alone. Every day he stayed home and wrote music. He was often unhappy. He was afraid of many things. He was afraid to die. He was also afraid his head would fall off his shoulders. This was a problem when he conducted music. So he sometimes held his head with his left hand and conducted with his right hand.
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Sergei Lazarev – famous singer

Sergei Lazarev

Sergei Lazarev – famous singer

Sergei Lazarev is a singer, dancer and actor. He was born on April 1, 1983 in Moscow, Russia. Sergei’s parents divorced when he was quite small and his mother brought up two sons alone. At the age of four the future singer was engaged in gymnastics. Sergei became interested in music in his childhood and performed with various children’s ensembles. The boy also acted in the theater by Boris Pokrovsky.
In 1995, Lazarev became a soloist of the children’s collective Neposedy, the same group in which Yulia Volkova and Lena Katina (t.A.T.u.) met each other. The group participated in various well-known TV shows and festivals.
In September 1996 Sergei won the first prize at the contest Bravo Bravissimo in Italy.
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