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Mikhail Glinka entered the history of world music as the founder of Russian national opera. His composing talent was not always approved, sometimes criticized and ridiculed, but the composer passed…

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Mikhail Glinka entered the history of world music as the founder of Russian national opera. His composing talent was not always approved, sometimes criticized and ridiculed, but the composer passed all the tests with honor and took a deserved place in the galaxy of great musicians.

Polish nobleman
The homeland of Mikhail Glinka was Smolensk province, where his family lived in the village of Novospasskoye from the time of his great-grandfather – the Polish gentry, who swore allegiance to the tsar and continued military service in Russia.

Michael’s parents were second cousins ​​to each other. Therefore, Glinka’s father, Ivan Nikolaevich, needed to get permission from the bishop to marry a second cousin. They married the young and they lived for many years in happiness and harmony, raising nine children.

Hereditary Polish nobleman Mikhail Ivanovich Glinka was born on the estate of his parents on June 1, 1804. The father, who was a retired captain, did not spare money for the improvement of his village, for which the peasants loved him immeasurably. Within a few years, the settlement literally changed, streets with bridges appeared in it, an English-style park, peasant houses were bleached with chalk, and the manor’s mansion was two-story and had 27 luxuriously furnished rooms.

However, no rich decoration of the house prevented Mikhail from comprehending composer Mikhail Glink with a simple rural life, communicating with peasants on an equal footing, understanding their problems, respecting traditions and gravitating towards simple folk art. According to critics of that time, the impressions of childhood spent in the village are reflected in the best works of Mikhail Glinka. The composer kept autobiographical notes, in which he himself confirmed that the songs he had heard as a child became the reason for his deep love for Russian music. From childhood, he learned to play the violin and piano, already then tried to compose music, sang great and painted just as well.

Shortly after the Patriotic War of 1812, his parents sent Mikhail to study in St. Petersburg. In the capital, the young man had the honor of meeting the famous people of his time. First of all, it was Evgeny Baratynsky, Alexander Pushkin and Vasily Zhukovsky. And at the institute, the curator of the Glinka course was Pushkin’s friend from the time of the Lyceum Wilhelm Küchelbeker. Strong friendship was then established between Mikhail Glinka and writer and composer Vladimir Odoevsky.

The temptation of music
In those years, Mikhail Glinka realized that craving for music was not a simple hobby. He began to take private lessons from famous teachers of that period – John Field and Karl Zeiner. composer Mikhail Glinka Glinka studied European classical music, played music in noble salons, began to try his hand at composer art. Soon his efforts were crowned with success, he appeared works in different genres. Even then, in musical circles, he knew his romances to Baratynsky’s words “Do not tempt me without need” and Pushkin “Do not sing, beauty, with me. But the composer himself was dissatisfied with what he did.

In 1823, Mikhail Ivanovich went to the Caucasus, got acquainted with the music of different nations, then worked for several years in the management of communication lines, and at 26 he decided to devote himself to creativity and went to the cradle of musical culture – Milan.

First opera
Imbued with the Italian spirit, the composer composes plays based on famous operas and writes music for instrumental ensembles. In 1833, Mikhail Glinkaon moved to Germany, where, under the leadership of Siegfried, Dan began to study pages of music theory unknown to him. In Germany, he received news of the death of his father, and Glinka urgently left for his homeland, already having plans to create a national opera.

When he shared his thoughts and ideas with Vasily Zhukovsky, he suggested that he take as a basis the plot about Ivan Susanin. At the same time, Mikhail Glinka made an offer to the 17-year-old Marya Ivanova (to whom he dedicated the romance “I only recognized you”), in April 1835 they got married and left for the composer’s native village, where he set to work on the future opera “Life for the Tsar”.

A year later, the work was ready, but putting it on stage was not easy at all. The director of the imperial theaters Alexander Gedeonov prevented this. He handed the score over to the bandmaster Kavos, who had his own opera on a similar topic. But he acted nobly, wrote a flattering review of Glinka’s work and removed his opera from the repertoire. But only Gedeonov refused to pay a fee to Mikhail Ivanovich for his opera.

National epic of Mikhail Glinka
Mikhail Glinka Ekaterina Kern
The premiere was a great success in November 1836. Glinka could not believe his happiness. The emperor himself spoke grateful words to him for a long time, and critics called Life for the Tsar a national heroic and patriotic epic.

Not without intrigue and at the premiere of the opera. One of the spectators cried out loudly that the work is worthy only of coachmen.

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