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Aram Khachaturian

Aram Khachaturian Photo: Boosey & Hawkes
1903 - 1978



Much-loved Soviet composer of Armenian background, who continued vein of colourful Russian exoticism from 19th century composers like Borodin and Rimsky-Korsakov * Aram Khachaturian studied at Gnessin Institute and Moscow Conservatoire under Glière and Myaskovsky * Later taught composition at Gnessin Institute for many years * Most famous for ballets Gayaneh and Spartacus, performed worldwide by the Bolshoy and Kirov companies during the Soviet period * Many concertos include those for piano (1936) and violin (1940), the latter written for and championed by David Oistrakh * His three symphonies are of epic, almost filmic character, with very grand and kaleidoscopic orchestration * Among many theatre scores, the music for Masquerade, with its imitations of 19th century waltzes, is most frequently played * Wrote much official Soviet music including Ode to the Memory of Lenin and Poem about Stalin, which mixes folk-tunes from Armenia, Georgia and Azerbaidzhan * After Stalin’s death (1953) was courageous in his struggle to return Soviet musical life to greater freedom and experiment * His music has reached a wide audience in the West through its reuse on film and TV

Works by Aram Khachaturian include:
Violin Concerto (1940)
Symphony No.2 (1943)
Masquerade (1940) Incidental music to play by Lermontov
Gayaneh (1942) and Spartacus (1956) Ballets in 4 acts)

Works by Khachaturian are represented by Boosey & Hawkes in the UK, British Commonwealth (excluding Canada) and the Republic of Ireland

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