What is it about Russian Music that makes it So Russian ?

Discuss piano and other musical repertoire.

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What is it about Russian Music that makes it So Russian ?

Postby Bubbles » Fri Sep 12, 2008 7:07 am

What is it about Russian Music that makes it So Russian ?

Issit the soul, and spirit or the mood ? All Russian music seem to have a particular beautiful melancholy feel towards it- ie Tchaikovsky, Rachmaninov, Rimski Korsakov, Alexander Glazunov and Shostakovich.

Take this example of the Ballet Raymonda by Glazunov:-


The first piece seems like a love dream, cantabile and graceful.
The second piece has that same Russian flavour, dark , melancholy, expressive.
The third piece- has that Russian feel again and I can hear this music originally composed for a balailaka.

Other examples are Traditional Anonymous music like Dark Eyes and the Russian Balailaka, and the Rachmaninov piano concerto no 3.

Although I feel that Shostakovich's piano music ( preludes and fugues ) have a typical character and feel to it- like a polka or ballet barre work exercise.

Their Ballet music is typical of the Russian melancholy melodies.
Is it the chord progression or their soul, expression and spirit ?

What do you think ?

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Postby kojiattwood » Fri Sep 12, 2008 10:44 am

Never underestimate the russian capacity for suffering.
That seems to come out in their artwork quite powerfully.

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Postby juufa72 » Fri Sep 12, 2008 9:46 pm

Not only is the music beautiful, but there are literary greats which capture a sense of mood that no other nationality can create. Perhaps it is social-political influence. Who knows. All I know is that it is beautiful.
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Postby pianolady » Fri Sep 12, 2008 10:50 pm

I have not read much Russian literature, but I do like Alexander Pushkin. A certain poem of his is one of my favorites:


Oh, Morpheus, give me joy till morning
For my forever painful love:
Just blow out candles' burning
And let my dreams in blessing move.
Let from my soul disappear
The separation's sharp rebuke!
And let me see that dear look,
And let me hear voice that dear.
And when will vanish dark of night
And you will free my eyes at leaving,
Oh, if my heart would have a right
To lose its love till dark of evening!
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Postby nathanscoleman » Sat Sep 13, 2008 4:06 pm

What is it about Russian Music that makes it So Russian ?

It's the Borscht ... definitely the borscht! 8)
the one, the only ... Nathan Coleman
"You see, my piano is for me what his ship is to a sailor; more indeed: it is my very self, my mother tongue, my life." - Franz Liszt

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