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1. Testimony: The Memoirs of Dmitri
2. Shostakovich: A Life Remembered,
3. Shostakovich and His World (The
4. Symphony No. 5 - Finale
5. Letters of Dmitri Shostakovich
6. Waltzes and Polkas: Piano Duet
7. 3 Fantastic Dances, Op. 5: Violin
8. Shostakovich:His Life and Music
9. Dmitri Shostakovich: A Life in
10. Twenty Four Preludes and Fugues
11. Composing the Modern Subject:
12. Shostakovich's Preludes and Fugues:
13. The Music of Dmitri Shostakovich,
14. Dmitri Shostakovich: The Life
15. Pages from the Life of Dmitri
16. Dmitri Shostakovich: the man and
17. Dmitri Shostakovich: An Essential
18. Dmitri Schostakowitsch und das
19. Dmitri Shostakovich, a complete
20. Dmitri Shostakovich: The Man and

1. Testimony: The Memoirs of Dmitri Shostakovich
by Solomon Volkov
Kindle Edition: 292 Pages (1979-12-31)
list price: US$20.00
Asin: B002FL4M2Y
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Product Description
With the composer's consent, the manuscript was smuggled out of Soviet Russia - but Shostakovich, fearing reprisals, stipulated that the book should not appear until after his death. Ever since its publication in 1979 it has been the subject of controversy, some suggesting that Volkov invented parts of it, but most affirming that it revealed a profoundly ambivalent Shostakovich which the world had never seen before - his life at once triumphant and tragic. Either way, it remains indispensable to an understanding of Shostakovich's life and work. Testimony is intense and fiercely ironic, both plain-spoken and outspoken. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (24)

5-0 out of 5 stars Memoirs centered around one main character (Stalin)
Shostakovich's terrible memories brush a dark and desolate picture of the living conditions under Stalin's leadership in the Soviet Union, with memorable portraits of the dictator himself, of friends and enemies: `I thought of all my friends. And I saw only mountains of dead bodies. I am not exaggerating, just mountains.'

Stalin was a spider. Anyone who was trapped in his web had to die. Some even didn't deserve a sparkle of mercy. They really wanted to be so close to him to get pats on their back. Defiling themselves with blood of innocent people was absolutely no problem.
Stalin had no ideology, no convictions, no ideas or principles. Stalin's only aim was to tyrannize people, to make them fearful and obedient in order to consolidate his power. People literally sh.t in their pants when they had to appear before him and they considered this to be an honor!
Stalin ruled by ukases. One day the leader and teacher said this and the next day something completely different. It was pure madness. He was a man full of black envy for those who had more fame than himself (Zhukov, Akhmatova).

Atmosphere in the USSR under Stalin
In those days everybody wrote denunciations. Composers wrote it on their scores and musicologists on plain paper. And not even one of them repented. Blind folk singers were executed, because they sang songs with a dubious content: one couldn't correct texts of blind people.
Why did Shostakovich survive unlike his friends Meyerhold or Tukhatchevski? Because he wrote good film music and Stalin considered movies as important propaganda tools.

Cynicism about artists and politicians
He is extremely harsh for Solzhenitsyn (the so-called humanist), Sakharov, Shaw, Malraux, Romain Rolland, Lion Feuchtwanger (he never really saw Moscow) or Mayakovsky (power was for him the great moral law).
His advice is: do not try to save mankind. Try to save one man; that's much harder. Saving the whole of mankind nearly always turns into genocides.

These memories contain excellent information on Russian musical life: Glazounov, Mussorgsky, Rimsky-Korsakov.
The whole book bathes in blood, in innocent blood, in a Kafkaesque atmosphere full of terror and dead bodies. And what about music in these horrific times? It came also under attack ... for formalism.

This tragic work is a must read for all those interested in music and the history of mankind.

4-0 out of 5 stars A fascinating portrait of a brilliant man
There has been great controversy surrounding the truth and accuracy in this book. Allegedly his last wife claimed that he never spoke with Solomon Volkov, but there is a photo in the front cover of Mr. and Mrs. Shostakovich with Volkov and Tishchenko, Shostakovich's favorite student, so I don't know what the basis of her comment was. Maxim and Galya Shostakovich, his children, both agree that the book is factual, so that's good enough for me. With that said, the book is by no means an autobiography. Volkov assembled this volume after compiling his notes from his interviews with the composer. He could not record their discussions, as Shostakovich shied away from microphones.

Most of the pages are filled with Shostakovich's musings about the people in his life, and little about his own life experiences. He was well cultured, and makes frequent references to important Russians in theater and literature, as well as in music and history. This results in many footnotes so the average reader can understand what is being discussed!

With that said, one can learn much about the composer's beliefs and personality by reading this, much as a literary character can be characterized through their interactions with other characters. I regret that he does not speak more about his music, but I suppose he is right when he says that his music is meant to speak for itself.
It is lamentable that this musical genius did not live a more fulfilling life. The last section of the book implies that he has always lived a very troubled and melancholy life, but perhaps that is why his music was so brilliant.

I rate this 4 stars instead of 5 because of the lack of discussion about his life.

5-0 out of 5 stars Far worse than we thought.
I'm still reading the book, but I have read enough to have realized how malignant the Soviet Regime was.I am also left amazed, alarmed and dissapointed that the Russians are still willing to grant their leader (Putin) unlimited power, that they are willing have dissent stifled, tolerate murder of those who disagree including prominent journalists, and leaders who declare speech they don't like as treason.Humanity can learn from its mistakes?

That Shostakovich could write such magnificent music within the constraints imposed by the "Leader and Teacher" and his followers and under the threat of exile and deportation or death is mind-boggling. As I read the book, I feel like Shostakovich is talking to me.He teaches me about himself, but also other artists including great ones who were murdered because somebody didn't like the art they produced or because the art didn't promote Stalin's intentions.What he says also tells a lot about that regime and others who think they know the way for the rest of us and are willing to kill us if we don't practice what they preach.

I recommend that anyone who reads the book also read the preface and introduction.They are a little tedious, but they set the stage for the maestro.Once he starts "talking,"there is no tedium.

3-0 out of 5 stars True lies
Dmitri Shostakovich, now over thirty years removed from his death in 1975, represents one of the greatest virtues in art: that it can break painful silences and transcend an oppressive few for the good of many.Unlike the minor roles that classical composers hold in society nowadays, the premiere of a Shostakovich symphony, string quartet, or song cycle was a major, socially relevant happening.In extraordinary instances like his Seventh and Eighth Symphonies (written in 1941 and 1943), Shostakovich's work attracted millions of listeners throughout the world.It is a separate issue as to whether or not the composers of today have isolated themselves from the masses, but Shostakovich's music was certainly a willing and able contributor to the betterment of mankind.

By the time that Shostakovich and musicologist Solomon Volkov are said to have begun work on 'Testimony' in 1971, the 65-year-old composer was much a living record of Soviet cultural history.Shostakovich's pensive look was conditioned by the Bolshevik Revolution, its difficult aftermath, the Second World War, persecutions at the hands of Josef Stalin, and a continuous siege on Russian artists of every medium.According to Volkov, these experiences had grown cobwebs in Shostakovich's mind; no Soviet citizen discussed history under the Stalinist regime, which was equally heart-wrenching and dangerous.Letters, diaries, and other written records were destroyed to prevent 'guilt by association' and avoid one's sentence to the Gulag.Fear and paranoia were inevitable results: even during the slow 'Thaw' under Nikita Khrushchev, Shostakovich remained largely silent (except for his music) and kept memories under wraps.

Volkov claims a strong bond with Shostakovich through two pivotal events: the suppression of 'Rothschild's Violin,' an opera written by Shostakovich's late pupil Veniamin Fleishman, and the censoring of historical information provided by Shostakovich for Volkov's book on young Leningrad composers.Experiencing another generation's worth of censorship is what supposedly gave Shostakovich the longing to dust those mental cobwebs off and begin work on 'Testimony: The Memoirs of Dmitri Shostakovich As Related to and Edited by Solomon Volkov.'Arguably the most controversial book in world musical literature - save for the philosophical writings of Wagner - 'Testimony' has managed to survive fierce attack from critics and is still looked upon as a vivid portrait of the man and oppressive society he was immersed in.

Originally published by Harper & Row in 1979, 'Testimony' won the ASCAP-Deems Taylor Award for distinguished music writing and has enjoyed several later impressions.Limelight Editions, who released its first paperback edition in 1984, has now commemorated Testimony's 25th anniversary with a 2004 printing, which contains the brief foreword of conductor-pianist Vladimir Ashkenazy.Ashkenazy, a staunch supporter of 'Testimony,' credits Volkov with elucidating Shostakovich's persona and breaking the myth of Shostakovich as a willing Soviet propagandist.He also extends Testimony's support to Rudolf Barshai, who conducted the premiere of Shostakovich's Fourteenth Symphony and claims 'Testimony' as '100 percent correct.'

Those who read 'Testimony' for the first time will perhaps judge it a fascinating tome on Soviet cultural and social history.The book opens with a preface by Volkov that explains how the working relationship developed between Shostakovich and himself.Volkov's lengthy introduction follows, placing Shostakovich's career in striking relief to the conditions under which he lived.Trailing the Ashkenazy foreword are 273 pages of Shostakovich's 'recollections and opinions,' said to have been compiled in shorthand and later edited by Volkov.The memoirs are in loose chronological order: Shostakovich first touches upon his 'uninteresting' childhood (though interesting from an outsider's point of view), his conservatory studies, and personalities he met at a young age.According to Volkov, Shostakovich found it easier to discuss his life in relation to others - a 'mirrored style.'Of the many people he knew in his earlier years, three names stand out: Alexander Glazunov, a well-known composer and head of the St. Petersburg/Petrograd Conservatory; Vsevolod Meyerhold, the famed dramatist whose company employed Shostakovich in his early twenties; and friend Mikhail Tukhachevsky, Marshal of the Soviet Union, who was executed on treason charges drummed up by Stalin.

Middle sections deal with Shostakovich's nightmares in 1936 and 1948, when he was reproached by the Soviet Communist Party for 'formalism' and 'bourgeois decadence.'The Leningrader paints a disgusting scene of tribunals for composers, writers, and other artists who looked to pass blame onto their colleagues and avoid a death sentence.Shostakovich only goes so far in discussing these events, apparently too repulsed to describe matters for long.The remaining pages alternate between Shostakovich's thoughts on Soviet life, his compositions, and his attitudes toward the West.Particularly engaging are his reorchestration of Mussorgsky's 'Boris Godunov' and how the USSR oppressed culture in national republics such as the Ukraine and Kazakhstan.Shostakovich often delves into the process of writing music, which is both fascinating and instructive for any young musician.

'Testimony' is written in a conversational language, which gives the pseudo-memoirs an intimate feel.The book was translated by Antonina W. Bouis, highly regarded for her work on Soviet authors, including poet Yevgeny Yevtushenko and nuclear physicist Andrei Sakharov.There is much idiosyncratic language, which is unavoidable, but the writing maintains flow and balance.The text also conveys plenty of wry humor that Shostakovich was known for.Stalin and his apparatchiks are never free from Shostakovich's vitriol and the composer can unearth a joke in describing his worst hours.It was Shostakovich, after all, who wrote the sarcastic Thirteenth Symphony and 'Rayok,' a cantata that spat upon the 1948 anti-formalist campaign and was not heard publicly until 1989.

Volkov was in his late twenties when compiling 'Testimony' and admits to his relative inexperience as a writer.The recollections are mostly chronological, but Volkov could have arranged them more sensibly.Shostakovich's discussions of Glazunov pop up at tangential moments when all of these recollections could have been grouped together.In fact, Glazunov is discussed far too often: Shostakovich's opinions of Tchaikovsky are hardly noted, while Rachmaninov and modern Czech composers such as Martinu and Suk are not mentioned in the text at all.There is also not enough said about musical performance; Shostakovich hardly discusses his technique for playing piano and says nothing about exceptional instrumentalists like Sviatoslav Richter, David Oistrakh, and Leonid Kogan.One wonders if Shostakovich chose not to discuss these men or if Volkov decided to omit the conversations.It's moments such as these when Volkov is disappointing as a young biographer.

The nagging question, of course, is how much of 'Testimony' contains pure Shostakovich (if any) and how much consists of Volkov and Soviet gossip.Disputes over 'Testimony' have reached a level of farce in American academia, both sides trying to preserve their scholarly reputations.If alive today, Shostakovich might very well have a laugh (and perhaps even write an operetta) over what has raged since Testimony's appearance.American musicologist Laurel Fay heads the anti-Testimony camp, citing articles written by Shostakovich years earlier that match the openings to each 'Testimony' chapter (excluding the first).Allan Ho and Dmitri Feofanov support 'Testimony' in their book 'Shostakovich Reconsidered,' using psychological evaluation (who's next, the optometrists?) to back a claim that Shostakovich read these articles for historical context and could rehash such passages from memory.The 'Testimony' debate has grown so ugly between these two camps that Shostakovich is now something of a football for academics to kick around.

Significant names besides Vladimir Ashkenazy have supported 'Testimony:' Shostakovich's two children, cellist Mstislav Rostropovich, and soprano Galina Vishnevskaya have all backed Testimony's general sentiment, though none would accept it as 'absolute truth.'Certainly, Volkov's book cannot be taken as gospel, but 'Testimony' was written by a young journalist with first-hand experience of the Soviet system.Volkov was, in many ways, better equipped to understand Shostakovich's dilemmas than plush academicians of the West who look to discredit him.

Shostakovich's ability to write was limited by a muscular disorder in his final years, which placed the task of his memoirs in a secondary writer's hands.Even if compiled by an older, more experienced journalist, 'Testimony' would still not have originated from Shostakovich's pen and its controversy as a second-hand (and explosive) tome may have been equally apparent.Decades of confusion over Shostakovich's place in Soviet art - the belief in his role as a compliant celebrity - may require decades of adjustment.Ignorance of Soviet reality continues to linger in the worst places.

It must be said that 'Testimony,' even in Limelight's 25th anniversary edition, is completely unchanged from the original 1979 printing.In Volkov's essays and footnotes, 'Soviet affairs,' for instance, are still discussed as current and now-deceased figures are still mentioned as living.Occasional typographic errors also remain intact.It is perhaps in the best interests of 'Testimony,' however, to leave these sections unaltered and as they were originally conceived.While outdated, the book keeps a certain historical authenticity and shows that Volkov has refused to compromise in the face of those questioning his journalistic integrity.

And to fully appreciate Shostakovich's inner workings, there is no better source than his music, which continues to grow in popularity.'Testimony' offers a remark that no listener or scholar of any persuasion can dispute: 'I write music, it's performed.It can be heard, and whoever wants to hear it will.After all, my music says it all.''Testimony,' in the meantime, remains widely circulated at bookstores, in libraries, and on the Internet.

5-0 out of 5 stars memoirs of a past age
good reading for people acquainted with 20th century european music and politics. Awful details on the Stalin and post-Stalin era. ... Read more

2. Shostakovich: A Life Remembered, Second Edition
by Elizabeth Wilson
Paperback: 600 Pages (2006-08-14)
list price: US$29.95 -- used & new: US$24.65
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Asin: 0691128863
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Shostakovich: A Life Remembered is a unique study of the great composer Dmitri Shostakovich, based on reminiscences from his contemporaries. Elizabeth Wilson covers the composer's life from his early successes to his struggles under the Stalinist regime, and his international recognition as one of the leading composers of the twentieth century. She builds up a detailed picture of Shostakovich's creative processes, how he was perceived by contemporaries, and of the increased contrast between his private life and public image as his fame increased.

This new edition, produced to coincide with the centenary of Shostakovich's birth, draws on many new writings on the composer. In doing so, it provides both a more detailed and focused image of Shostakovich's life and a wider view of his cultural background. In particular, Shostakovich's sardonic and witty sense of humor reveals itself in many of his letters to close friends. Shostakovich offers fascinating insight into the complex personality and musical life of this great composer, and examines his position as one of the major figures in the cultural life of twentieth-century Russia.

... Read more

Customer Reviews (4)

4-0 out of 5 stars In praise of Shostakowich: A Life Rememberedby E. Wilson

Elizabeth Wilson did a great job writing this book.It must be difficult to write a balanced biography on a deceased artist which lived under a different political-cultural regime compared to modern western regimes. Only recently I have read several biographies of Musicans which were very disappointing. Wilson collected lots of personal information supplied by friends, collaborators and other world known Musicans. This information provided an excellent picture of Shostakowich the giant Musican his outstanding work and personal difficulties. I heartily recommend this book to every Music lover.

4-0 out of 5 stars Shostakovich: `pain personified'
In 1936 Stalin walked out of Dmitri Shostakovich's opera, Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk. Soon an article in Pravda appeared: "Muddle Instead of Music" - inept criticism, but devastating effect. The political war for Shostakovich's soul had begun.

Performance of his Fourth Symphony was canceled. Friends avoided him. Musicians supporting him were persecuted. And as Shostakovich, one of the 20th century's greatest composers, would acknowledge much later, had it not been for the totalitarian regime under which he lived, "I would have written more pure music."

Yet this same man who suffered under Soviet communism also joined the Communist Party in 1960, even spoke or signed statements against Soviet dissidents. What are we to make of him?

In Elizabeth Wilson's artfully woven collection of reminiscences, Shostakovich (1906-75) emerges three-dimensional, fascinating, yet still enigmatic - neither Soviet cheerleader nor covert subversive, as some would have him. First published in 1994, the book is freshly augmented with new material for his centenary. The voices of family, friends, composers, conductors and other musicians make riveting reading; they document Shostakovich's struggle to balance the demands of musical genius with those of a repressive state.

Wilson's credentials are first-rate: She studied cello with the great Mstislav Rostropovich, a close friend of Shostakovich's, and attended several premieres of the composer's late work. She documents in chilling detail the fears under which Shostakovich worked, the subterfuges he used to make his music pass in a hostile climate while still mining his soul's depths.

For 1936 wasn't his last run-in with the state. His heroic Seventh Symphony, performed during the World War II siege of Leningrad, bought him credit with Stalinist authorities up to a point. But with war's end came new decrees denouncing artistic "formalism" - excess attention to aesthetics at the expense of socialist realism.

Rostropovich recalls: "For him it was a calamity that the people for whom he had written his works with his very blood, to whom he had exposed his very soul, did not understand him."

One decree came in 1948 as Shostakovich wrote his Concerto for Violin in A minor. The work could not be performed publicly till 1955, after Stalin's death. Musically, it's no proletarian picnic: a "relentlessly hard, intense piece for the soloist," Russian composer Venyamin Basner calls it. Violinist David Oistrakh even asked Shostakovich for the mercy of "letting the orchestra take over the first eight bars in the Finale so ... I can wipe the sweat off my brow."

Though her book doesn't move in a straight-line narrative, Wilson's analyses frame the oral histories - many of them from interviews she conducted - and for the most part provide adequate context. At times she fails to referee discrepancies between speakers. Laurel Fay's 2000 Shostakovich: A Life, a more traditional biography, clears up some confusions.

With Shostakovich, some matters may never be entirely clear. He gave communism lip service, but did speak out powerfully in his music. He helped innumerable repressed artists behind the scenes. Though not Jewish, he defended the Jews, affirming their culture musically.

As another composer said, the perpetually nervous, agitated Shostakovich was "pain personified," but in his music "was able to transform the pain ... into something exalted and full of light."

5-0 out of 5 stars perfect timing
Book arrived as quickly as advertised, which was great because I needed it to write my New York Times antiques column (published today). THanks!
Wendy Moonan

5-0 out of 5 stars Astounding, intimately clear
Although not as thorough on the music of the great composer itself, this book is a must read for anyone interested in Shostakovich, or music and Soviet history in general.

Wilson lucidly supports her interviews and articles from colleagues, friends,and family of the composer with a curious detachment that serves to clarify rather than alienate the subject matter. The articles and interviews themselves are priceless artifacts, and presented here in an intelligent fashion.

Shostakovich's life is portrayed here with startling intimacy. The reader will find him or herself able to visualize the genius composer and his quirks, and those who listen to the relevant works of music will find their messages so much more meaningful. ... Read more

3. Shostakovich and His World (The Bard Music Festival)
Paperback: 432 Pages (2004-07-26)
list price: US$31.95 -- used & new: US$22.90
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Asin: 0691120692
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Dmitri Shostakovich (1906-1975) has a reputation as one of the leading composers of the twentieth century. But the story of his controversial role in history is still being told, and his full measure as a musician still being taken. This collection of essays goes far in expanding the traditional purview of Shostakovich's world, exploring the composer's creativity and art in terms of the expectations--historical, cultural, and political--that forged them.

The collection contains documents that appear for the first time in English. Letters that young "Miti" wrote to his mother offer a glimpse into his dreams and ambitions at the outset of his career. Shostakovich's answers to a 1927 questionnaire reveal much about his formative tastes in the arts and the way he experienced the creative process. His previously unknown letters to Stalin shed new light on Shostakovich's position within the Soviet artistic elite.

The essays delve into neglected aspects of Shostakovich's formidable legacy. Simon Morrison provides an in-depth examination of the choreography, costumes, décor, and music of his ballet The Bolt and Gerard McBurney of the musical references, parodies, and quotations in his operetta Moscow, Cheryomushki. David Fanning looks at Shostakovich's activities as a pedagogue and the mark they left on his students' and his own music. Peter J. Schmelz explores the composer's late-period adoption of twelve-tone writing in the context of the distinctively "Soviet" practice of serialism. Other contributors include Caryl Emerson, Christopher H. Gibbs, Levon Hakobian, Leonid Maximenkov, and Rosa Sadykhova. In a provocative concluding essay, Leon Botstein reflects on the different ways listeners approach the music of Shostakovich. ... Read more

4. Symphony No. 5 - Finale
by Dmitri Shostakovich
 Paperback: Pages (2010-01-01)
-- used & new: US$17.00
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Asin: B003863TXI
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5. Letters of Dmitri Shostakovich to Boris Tishchenko with the addressee's commentaries and reminiscences.
by Shostakovich Dmitri
Paperback: Pages (2001)
-- used & new: US$15.00
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Asin: 5737901246
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6. Waltzes and Polkas: Piano Duet
Paperback: 15 Pages (2001-06-01)
list price: US$17.95 -- used & new: US$11.73
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Asin: 0634034502
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One Piano, Four Hands. ... Read more

7. 3 Fantastic Dances, Op. 5: Violin and Piano (String)
by Harry Glickman
Paperback: 8 Pages (2001-06-01)
list price: US$17.95 -- used & new: US$10.84
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Asin: 063403474X
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Transcribed for Violin and Piano by Harry Glickman. ... Read more

8. Shostakovich:His Life and Music (Life & Times)
by Brian Morton
Hardcover: 138 Pages (2007-03-01)
list price: US$24.95 -- used & new: US$10.90
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Asin: 1904950507
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Dmitri Shostakovich (1906-1975) was the most controversial Russian composer of Soviet times. His music, tonal and expressive, and sometimes highly dramatic, has not always been in line with official Soviet taste. He wrote 15 symphonies, chamber music, ballets and operas, the latter including Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk (1934), which was suppressed astoo divorced from the proletariat, but revived as Katerina Izmaylova (1963). ... Read more

Customer Reviews (2)

3-0 out of 5 stars Could be worse, could be better
I'm afraid I must disagree with the previous reviewer. I don't see a lot of evidence of scholarship here...the book comes across as a nice general overview of the composer's life and music. Morton sketches the composer's biography reasonably well, given the hall-of-mirrors nature of Shostakovich's life and personality. His discussions of the music are clearly not intended for trained musicians but instead for the average music-lover. Don't look for much in the way of musical analysis here, and don't expect great revelations regarding the composer's character. It's fine as far as it goes--as long as you approach the book on these terms you'll be content. P.S.: The print is a bit on the small side, which makes reading this a bit more of a chore than it ought to be.

5-0 out of 5 stars A work of impressive scholarship
Demitri Shostakovich was the single most popular Soviet composer of his generation and internationally recognized for his enduring contribution to music. With a reputation in music that has only increased since his death in 1975, Shostakovich is considered by many to be the last great classical symphonist of the twentieth century. Now music historian and biographer Brian Morton has written a definitive account of the remarkable life of a gifted man who was both an acclaimed concert pianist and an influential composer in "Shostakovich: His Life And Music". From his 1934 opera 'Lady Macbeth of Mtsenk' which was ultimately denounced by Joseph Stalin and led to the composer's struggle under the 'Great Terror' inflicted by the Soviet government on its own people, to his being embraced for Seventh Symphony composition that was embraced by the government embattled against the Nazi's, to his later years of prolific composing despite enduring health problems, "Shostakovich" provides a complete and accurate description of life as a musician under the conditions imposed by the communist state. A work of impressive scholarship, "Shostakovich" is a welcome addition to community and academic library Music History reference collections, as well as very highly recommended reading for students of Soviet History. ... Read more

9. Dmitri Shostakovich: A Life in Film: The Filmmaker's Companion 3 (The Kinofiles Filmmaker's Companions)
by John Riley
Paperback: 168 Pages (2005-02-05)
list price: US$30.00 -- used & new: US$19.02
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Asin: 1850434840
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Between 1929 and 1970, Dmitri Shostakovich wrote almost 40 film scores of Soviet films, from Stalinist cult epics to classical literary adaptations. His long and distinguished cinema career has hitherto been overlooked.Combining analysis and anecdote, John Riley provides this first account to examine the scores and their contexts in the films for which they were written, the ways in which contemporary events shaped both films and scores, and how he thought about, developed and applied his film music.
... Read more

Customer Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars Shostakovich's film music
This is a very well-written discussion of Shostakovich's music for film composed throughout much of his life.The author has splendid command of the subject. Although it is rather specialized, anyone interested in Shostakovich's music and biography will find it interesting.

Nora Klein
Houston, TX ... Read more

10. Twenty Four Preludes and Fugues on Dmitri Shostakovich
by Joanna Boulter
Paperback: 75 Pages (2007-06)
list price: US$12.71 -- used & new: US$12.25
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Asin: 1904614345
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Joanna Boulter's first full-length poetry collection takes the form of a long sequence based on the life and turbulent times of the Russian composer Dmitri Shostakovich. Taking Shostakovich's "Preludes & Fugues" as her starting point, the poet puts together a deeply-considered and thoroughly-researched account of the composer's life, with the 'preludes' written in free or invented forms in the third person, and the 'fugues' in any strict poetic form in the first person as the voice of the composer himself. The effect of these poems is cumulative and together they make an original contribution to the assessment and celebration of the life and work of Shostakovich. ... Read more

11. Composing the Modern Subject: Four String Quartets by Dmitri Shostakovic
by Sarah Reichardt
Hardcover: 144 Pages (2008-10-01)
list price: US$89.95 -- used & new: US$67.71
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Asin: 0754658848
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Editorial Review

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Since the publication of Solomon Volkov's disputed memoirs of Dmitri Shostakovich, the composer and his music has been subject to heated debate concerning how the musical meaning of his works can be understood in relationship to the composer's life within the Soviet State. While much ink has been spilled very little work has attempted to define how Shostakovich's music has remained so arresting not only to those within the Soviet culture, but also to Western audiences - even though such audiences are often largely ignorant of the compositional context or even the biography of the composer.This book offers a useful corrective: setting aside biographically grounded and traditional analytical modes of explication, Reichardt uncovers and explores the musical ambiguities of four of the composer's middle string quartets, especially those ambiguities located in moments of rupture within the musical structure. The music is constantly collapsing, reversing, inverting and denying its own structural imperatives.Reichardt argues that such confrontation of the musical language with itself, though perhaps interpretable as Shostakovich's own unique version of double-speak, also speaks poignantly to the fractured state of a more general form of modern subjectivity.Reichardt employs the framework of Lacanian psychoanalysis to offer a cogent explanation of this connection between disruptive musical process and modern subjectivity. The ruptures of Shostakovich's music become symptoms of the pathologies at the core of modern subjectivity. These symptoms, in turn, relate to the Lacanian concept of the real, which is the empty kernel around which the modern subject constructs reality. This framework proves invaluable in developing a powerful, original hermeneutic understanding of the music. Read through the lens of the real, the riddles written into the quartets reveal the arbitrary and contingent state of the musical subject's constructed reality, reflecting pathologies endemic to the modern condition. ... Read more

12. Shostakovich's Preludes and Fugues: Contexts, Style, Performance
by Mark Mazullo
Hardcover: 304 Pages (2010-06-22)
list price: US$60.00 -- used & new: US$48.00
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Asin: 0300149433
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Editorial Review

Product Description

This is the first book-length study of Shostakovich’s Twenty-Four Preludes and Fugues for piano, Opus 87. Mark Mazullo explains the cultural context in which Shostakovich composed, relates the cycle to piano works (by Bach, Hindemith, and others), and offers individual commentaries on each of the Preludes and Fugues.
... Read more

13. The Music of Dmitri Shostakovich, the Symphonies (The great composers series)
by Roy Blokker
 Hardcover: 192 Pages (1979-07)
list price: US$29.50
Isbn: 0838619487
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Customer Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent summary of the Shostakovich Symphonies
I'm currently studying some of Shostakovich's symphonies, however many early reviewers have that obviously 'western' bias to Soviet works; especially so concerning the 'war' symphonies 7th and 8th. This book attempts (very well) to evalute the symphonies in a less political light. The music thoery level is not to deep for the musically educated laymen, but there's enough info to allow more detailed study if required.
Also, if symphonies are your 'bag', and you can find it, Robert Layton's A Guide to the Symphony has excellent coverage of other 20th century symphonies, not just the standard ones, but also less known symphonists. ... Read more

14. Dmitri Shostakovich: The Life and Background of a Soviet Composer
by Victor Ilyich Seroff
 Hardcover: 267 Pages (1943-06)
list price: US$21.95
Isbn: 0836954823
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15. Pages from the Life of Dmitri Shostakovich
by Dmitri Sollertinsky, Ludmilla Sollertinsky
 Hardcover: 256 Pages (1981-03-23)

Isbn: 0709189346
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16. Dmitri Shostakovich: the man and his work -trans. by T. Guralsky
 Hardcover: 197 Pages (1947)

Asin: B000GT97OK
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17. Dmitri Shostakovich: An Essential Guide to His Life and Works (Classic FM Lifelines)
by Stephen Jackson
 Paperback: 107 Pages (1997-10)
list price: US$9.95 -- used & new: US$22.57
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1862050163
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Editorial Review

Product Description
Written with enthusiasm and accessible prose , the Classic fM Lifelines series will become the Everyman o f musical biographies. Titles for the series have been chose n from the Classic fM''s own listener surveys of the most pop ular composers. ' ... Read more

18. Dmitri Schostakowitsch und das judische musikalische Erbe =: Dmitri Shostakovich and the Jewish heritage in music (Studia Slavica musicologica) (German Edition)
Perfect Paperback: 354 Pages (2001)
-- used & new: US$129.17
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 3928864750
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19. Dmitri Shostakovich, a complete catalogue
by Malcolm MacDonald
 Paperback: 56 Pages (1985)
-- used & new: US$38.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B0006FAEPK
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20. Dmitri Shostakovich: The Man and His Work
by Ivan I. Martynov
 Hardcover: 197 Pages (1969-12)
list price: US$72.95
Isbn: 0837121000
Average Customer Review: 2.0 out of 5 stars
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Customer Reviews (1)

2-0 out of 5 stars Not a book for those with an in interest in music or history
This book was composed prior to Shostakovich's death by, it would appear, a Party hack.As such, the book contains minimal information or insight on Shostakovich's life and music, but does make a fascinating example of Soviet political criticism.In reading of the various "excesses" and "natural beauties" in Shostakovich's oeuvre, one really gets a feel for the oppressiveness of the Soviet cultural atmosphere in which the composer labored. ... Read more

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