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Chistyakov R.

Azon Fattah’s opera “Jamila”: on the preserved fragments of the score

Azon Fattah (1922–2013) is an outstanding composer, pianist, Honoured Artist of the Tatar Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic, author of numerous songs. Unfortunately, his name and music are little known for the modern audience. The article is devoted to the score of Azon Fattah’s opera “Jamila” from which only a few fragments have been preserved to the present day but in several versions partially sketchy, partially finished, and this fact seems to be very valuable as there is no complete and published score of the composition. “Jamila” is one of Fattah’s largest works, and features of his compositional style are presented and summarized in the opera on a large scale. The main goal of this article is a diverse study of the preserved musical material, which demonstrates its relevance in the context of studying the composer’s heritage. Various components of the opera are studied in series, the first being the plot choice in the context of the central ethical idea of the work. Different themes are organically interwoven, such as the theme of love and all-conquering power of art together with the oriental theme. The author chose a number structure of the opera and completed some first fully orchestrated numbers including those in the clavier form and those fixed as separate musical themes. The focus of the work is an analytical review and comparison of the Prologue and the Introduction. The musical scores of the numbers demonstrate mastery of orchestral writing and polyphony, the author’s sensitive timbre ear, the diversity and non-triviality of his melodic style.

Key words

Azon Fattah, songwriting, song of the Soviet period, opera, composer style, “Jamila”, Chingiz Aitmatov, sketch, score.

For citation

Chistyakov R. Azon Fattah’s opera “Jamila”: on the preserved fragments of the score // South-Russian musical anthology. 2019. № 4. PP. 54–64.