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Dmitri Shostakovich

Dmitri Shostakovich (1906-75)


Dmitri Shostakovich's life was characterised by various tussles with the Soviet artistic authorities - as their musical tastes and requirements ebbed and flowed, Shostakovich's style had to change with them. The most notorious example of this was his opera Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk - an amoral tale of adultery and murder which scandalised the authorities and led to a blunt and direct dressing-down in Pravda. Shostakovich's work was described as "muddle instead of music", and he consciously changed his compositional style in response - resulting in the more conservative (though ironically much more popular) 5th Symphony.

Further Reading: Shostakovich

 Recording of the Week, Shostakovich from Kirill Karabits, Oleg Tsibulko and the Russian National Orchestra

A new recording of Shostakovich's complex 'Babi Yar' symphony with bass Oleg Tsibulko gets to the heart of a work that's often seen as all politics and no emotion.

 Recording of the Week, Shostakovich from Alina Ibragimova

The Russian-born violinist brings searing intensity and muscular tone to the two concertos, backed to the hilt by Vladimir Jurowski and the State Academic Symphony Orchestra of Russia 'Evgeny Svetlanov'.

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