By Pauline Fairclough

ISBN-10: 0754650162

ISBN-13: 9780754650164

Composed in 1935-36 and meant to be his creative 'credo', Shostakovich's "Fourth Symphony" used to be now not played publicly until eventually 1961. right here, Dr Pauline Fairclough tackles head-on the most major and least understood of Shostakovich's significant works. She argues that the "Fourth Symphony" used to be extensively diverse from its Soviet contemporaries when it comes to its constitution, dramaturgy, tone or even language, and accordingly challenged the norms of Soviet symphonism at a vital degree of its improvement. With the backing of sought after musicologists resembling Ivan Sollertinsky, the composer might realistically have anticipated the most efficient to have taken position, and should also have meant the symphony to be a version for a brand new type of 'democratic' Soviet symphonism. Fairclough meticulously examines the ranking to notify a dialogue of tonal and thematic techniques, allusion, paraphrase and connection with musical varieties, or intonations. Such research is determined deeply within the context of Soviet musical tradition through the interval 1932-36, related to Shostakovich's contemporaries Shabalin, Myaskovsky, Kabalevsky and Popov. a brand new approach to research is usually complex the following, the place a number Soviet and Western analytical equipment are proficient by way of the theoretical paintings of Shostakovich's contemporaries Viktor Shklovsky, Boris Tomashevsky, Mikhail Bakhtin and Ivan Sollertinsky, including Theodor Adorno's past due examine of Mahler. during this means, the booklet will considerably raise an figuring out of the symphony and its context.

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Additional resources for A Soviet Credo: Shostakovich's Fourth Symphony

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Mahler - a unique composer - tried to resolve the problem of the Beethovenian symphony . . tried to solve the problem of bringing elements of folklore into the symphony . . tried to address the problem of a democratic musical language . I say from the heart that if I have a profound faith in Soviet symphonism, then it stems from the other side: being exhaustively occupied with modem Western symphonism, l can see that there are no premises for its development. We have all the preconditions . .

19 By 1935 Shostakovich was staunchly defending his (resumed) use of light music , even advocating it as suitable material for symphonic composition, as will be seen; with the benefit of hindsight, his rejection of it in 1930 looks transparently opportune. That he felt able in 1 93 1 to criticize RAPM 1 7 The Second Symphony is discussed at length in David Haas , Leningrad's Modernists: Studies in.. Composition and Musical Thought, 191 7-1932, New York: Peter Lang, 1 998, 1 23-54. l8 For a translation of Shostakovich's letter to Proletarskiy muzi1cant, see Darby, 'Problems of Context' , 1 85-7 .

For a full account of the chequered history of Soviet jazz , see S . Frederick Starr, Red and Hot: The Fate of Jazz in the Soviet Union 191 7-1980, Oxford: Oxford University Press , 1 985 . For a concise account of RAPM's attacks on light music , see Amy Nelson, Music for the Revolution: Musicians and Power in Early Soviet Russia, University Park, Pennysylvania: Pennysylvania State University Press , 2004, 222-8 . For a summary of the paranoia with which the dissemination of potentially harmful gramophone records , and radio repertoire was monitored by GLAVLIT (Administration for Literary and Publishing Affairs) , see Arlen V.

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A Soviet Credo: Shostakovich's Fourth Symphony by Pauline Fairclough


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