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Yakovleva O.

A birth of chef-d’oeuvre: G. Sviridov and V. Tchernushenko in their team-work on the cycle “Canticles and Prayers”

The article examines the process of formation of the concluding opus by G. Sviridov – “Canticles and Prayers” (1980–1997), as integral sacred and artistic concept. The researcher explains that magnitude of the author’s idea and distinct originality of “liturgical music” phenomenon (which is assumed as initial creative impulse, resulted in creation of the mentioned cycle) predetermined the slow pace of “materialization” of the conceptual piece, as well as plurality of “preliminary” versions of its sound realization. The determinant that assisted to the real “birth of chef-d’oeuvre” was collaboration of the composer with The State Academic St. Petersburg chapel under the conductor V. Tchernushenko. In the article it is observed that intensive and purposeful team-work of these outstanding masters implied not only “authorized” performing interpretation of particular choral pieces or “mini-cycles” (i. e. parts of “Canticles and Prayers”) but also the approval of different composition variants of this work. The mentioned team-work included all fundamental stages of artistic interpretation in the sphere of music. The musician-performer needs to have various analytical preparation which involves the continuous dialogue with the author, comprehension with his own inner hearing or “intelligent vision” of the smallest details of imagery that music text contains with the aim to construct a perfect “sound form” as “scenario” of the performance. An important role is assigned to rehearsals too; they are organized with immediate participation of the composer as the mostly demanding listener, and benevolent consultant, and also (in certain cases) the actual director of the performing process which efficiently corrects the choirmaster and singers (the favourite method of G. Sviridov). In conclusion, the joint express analysis after the end of the concert performance assists not only effective editing of the music texts (namely specification of performing strokes, dynamics, agogics, texture correlations etc.) but also correction of the primary “sound form” after its acoustic and communicative “approbation”. The author the article notes that achieved impressive result of interpreting “re-creation” of the cycle “Canticles and Prayers” virtually is predetermined by the unique co-authorship of the greatest Russian musicians G. Sviridov and V. Tchernushenko.

Key words

G. Sviridov, “Canticles and Prayers”, The State Academic St. Petersburg chapel, V. Tchernushenko, “liturgical music”, performing interpretation.

For citation

Yakovleva O. A birth of chef-d’oeuvre: G. Sviridov and V. Tchernushenko in their teamwork on the cycle “Canticles and Prayers” // South-Russian Musical Anthology. 2020. No. 3. Pp. 91–96.