sat 04/07/2020

theartsdesk Q&A: Composer Rodion Shchedrin | reviews, news & interviews

theartsdesk Q&A: Composer Rodion Shchedrin

theartsdesk Q&A: Composer Rodion Shchedrin

Neglected for unmusical reasons, the ballerina's husband is back

Maya Plisetskaya as Carmen and Nikolai Fadeyechev in Shchedrin's 1967 ballet for her

The Russian composer Rodion Shchedrin has long been damned faintly by two facts - that he is the husband of the Bolshoi prima ballerina Maya Plisetskaya and that he was for a long time the president of the Russian Composers' Union in the USSR. These two things were plenty enough to remove discussion of him from the musical arena to the seething forum of politics where every Soviet composer's actions were given intense non-musical scrutiny both inside and outside the USSR.

A composer's life is a marathon. It's not a sprint where you win and then you're a winner for eternity. No, you go up and down.

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Thanks for this. But Shchedrin has found his level. Pace Gergiev, he has written a great many non-communicative and forgettable scores, and a few really good ones. He's simply not up there with Schnittke or Gubaidulina. The point I object to is his definition of depression - when in one, write a new piece. Impossible in cases of real depression. It's not a 'bad mood'.

Looking for a cd of SHCHEDRIN'S: Not Love Alone Suite. The version with THE MOSCOW RADIO SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA under the direction of KIRIL KONDRASHIN. Was on a MELODIYA disc No. 74321491252. New or used playable disc will due. Even a homemade copy as long as it is recorded well is acceptable. Please contact me with your requirements. THANK, FRED

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