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Nearly finished and find this quite a bit more than its title suggests. It's not just Tchaikovsky Mr B explores, though he sheds more than ample light on the composer. We find out so much about the choreographer's childhood and adolescence in St. Petersburg, his early days with Diaghalev, his attitudes about traditional ballet, his appreciation and criticism of other composers and his religious and nationalistic attitudes. As I read other books about Mr B and his work, I realize the most often q...more
This is more than a book about Tchaikovsky, although the insights into this most gifted Russian composer's life and musical creations are eye-opening. Written from a series of intellectual conversations, disguised as interviews, which the author, Solomon Volkov, had with George Balanchine shortly before Balanchine's death in 1983, the book is also a profound exegesis on the work of the great choreographer, especially on how music -- Russian music -- informed everything he did. A must-read for ba...more
Solomon Moiseyevich Volkov (born 17 April 1944 in Uroteppa, Tadzhik SSR) is a Russian journalist and musicologist. He is best known for Testimony, which was published in 1979 following his emigration from the Soviet Union in 1976. He claimed that the book was the memoirs of Dmitri Shostakovich, as related to himself.More about Solomon Volkov...