Gregory Haimovsky

Gregory Haimovsky

A Pianist's Odyssey to Freedom

Marissa Silverman

Hardback
$99.00

University of Rochester Press

Overview

Overview

In the bleak cage of the Soviet Union, a brilliant pianist, inspired by the music of Olivier Messiaen, survived and triumphed. This is his story, told partly in his own words.
Interlacing material from previously unknown Russian archives, original recordings, photographs, and essays, Gregory Haimovsky: A Pianist's Odyssey to Freedom is the story of an extraordinary Russian concert pianist who, fighting the cultural prohibitions of the USSR, eventually succeeded in performing and recording major works by the prominent French composer Olivier Messiaen.

At the lowest point of his life, expelled from Moscow and exiled to a small provincial city, Haimovsky discovered Messiaen's oeuvre uncatalogued and hidden in the library of the Union of Soviet Composers. Haimovsky's intense studies and Soviet premieres of these banned compositions healed and liberated his mind, spirit, and artistic imagination. Messiaen's music also deepened and fueled Haimovsky's fierce personal and musical opposition to Soviet political and cultural doctrines.

Told partly in Haimovsky's own words and supplemented by interviews with several performers who worked with him between 1960 and 1972 as well as stories from his correspondence with major Russian artists, writers, and musicians of the time, Marissa Silverman's vivid narrative sheds new light on relationships between twentieth-century Russian music, Soviet politics, and the culture wars that raged during and after Stalin's barbaric rule.

Marissa Silverman is Associate Professor of Music at the John J. Cali School of Music, Montclair State University.

An e-book version of this title is available (9781787442856), to libraries through a number of trusted suppliers. See here for a full list of our partners.

Details

June 2018
14 black and white illustrations
280 pages
9x6 in
ISBN: 9781580469319
Format: Hardback
University of Rochester Press
BIC BGF, 1DVU, 2AB, 3JJP
BISAC MUS020000, HIS010010, POL005000
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Table of Contents

Introduction
A Pianist Is Born
A Concert Pianist in Exile
Spirituality, Love, and Color: Understanding Messiaen's Music
From Thaw to Frost: Neonationalism and the Messiaen Premieres in the USSR
Haimovsky and Grazhdanstvennost'
Appendix 1: Selected Performances of the Music of Olivier Messiaen by Gregory Haimovsky, 1964-72
Appendix 2: Selected Writing by Gregory Haimovsky on the Music of Olivier Messiaen
Notes
Index