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N. Sycheva

Fantasies by A. Chernov: to the problem of genre interactions

This article is devoted to the music of the modern Russian virtuoso pianist and public figure Alexei Chernov. A major part of his compositions was created in the genre of piano fantasy, what determined one of the main dominants of the early period of his work. In the considered fantasies the author points out the dominance of the principle of genre interactions and reveals the main features of Chernov’s individual style.

In fantasies op. 1 and op. 2 «Old Russian» there is a certain genre hierarchy, that demonstrates a fusion of genres of liturgical (akathist, znamenny chant) and romantic tradition (fantasy, prelude, elegy). In the course of the analysis, these fantasies are combined into one piano cycle due to the common content and similar approach to the music material and its development.

Paying special attention to the place of these genres in the dramaturgy of the whole, the author formulates the concept of the compositions. Thus, due to the placement of elegy genre in the center of the arch form of the composition, there is a nostalgic mode in the core of Fantasy Op. 1. In a creative impulse of fantasy, integrity of a human and harmony between him and the world are achieved by the placement in the first and the last parts of the work of the Akathist genre, which is a symbol of support and strength of spirit.

Concept of Fantasy op. 2 “Old Russian” is based on the idea of synthesis of harmony and beauty of the past and the inner world of the modern person. The first sphere is expressed in the genres of old Russian polyphonic Church music and znamenny chant, and the second – in the genre of romantic prelude, intonationally sprouting from the first. Thus, the harmony on the two fantasies is based on the person’s reliance on Old Russian spirituality.

Concluding the research, the author states that both fantasies belong to a significant layer so called “nova musica sacra” (N. Gulyanitskaya), which has been dominating Russian musical culture for more than two centuries.

Key words

Alexey Chernov, genre, genre interactions, fantasy, fantasy compositions, polygenre, akathist, znamenny chant.

For citation

Sycheva N. Fantasies by A. Chernov: to the problem of genre interactions // South-Russian Musical Anthology. 2021. No. 2. Pp. 90–96.