Dmitri Nikolayevich Smirnov

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Dmitri Nikolajewitsch Smirnow (2006)

Dmitri Nikolajewitsch Smirnow ( Russian Дми́трий Никола́евич Смирно́в ; born November 2, 1948 in Minsk ; † April 9, 2020 in Watford ) was a Russian composer .


Dmitri Smirnov was born the son of opera singers. The family first moved to Ulan-Ude , Buryat Republic (Central Asia), then to Frunze , Kyrgyzstan , where Smirnov spent his childhood. In 1967 he began studying music at the Moscow Conservatory . There he learned composition with Vladimir Fere and Nikolai Sidelnikow , instrumentation with Edison Denisov and analysis with Yuri Cholopow . In 1970 he made the acquaintance of Philip Herschkowitz , the Webern student who had moved from Vienna to Moscow . In 1972 Smirnov finished his studies and from 1973 worked as an editor at the Sowetski Kompositor publishing house . In 1976 his solo for harp won first prize at the Maastricht International Harp Week competition and he became internationally known. From 1981 to 1993 Smirnow worked as a freelance composer. During this time, in 1991, he moved to Great Britain. In 1992 he received a scholarship from St. John College and was visiting professor at Keele University from 1993 to 1997, as was his wife, the composer Jelena Olegowna Firsowa . There he was also composer in residence . From 1998 Dmitri Smirnow worked freelance again.

He died of COVID-19 in Watford in April 2020 .

Work (selection)


  • Tiriel (1989)
Opera in 3 acts based on a poem by William Blake , German text: Paul Esterházy

Choral work

for choir a cappella

Orchestral music

  • Mozart variations
  • Pastoral
  • Symphony No. 1 "The Seasons"
  • Tiriel
Symphonic prologue
  • Between Scylla and Charybdis
for string orchestra

Concert work

  • Concert No. 2
for piano & string orchestra
  • Triple concert
for alto saxophone, piano, double bass, strings & percussion


for 16 players
  • portrait
for wind ensemble
  • Mourning canons "In memoriam Igor Stravinsky"
for 13 players

Solo work

  • The seven angels of William Blake
for piano
  • Three dances
for xylophone solo
  • monologue
for clarinet
  • Solo for harp
  • Solo for trumpet
  • Music of the spheres
for piano
  • Two magic squares
for piano

Vocal symphonic

  • The Song of Songs
Cantata for soprano, tenor, choir & orchestra, Bible text
  • Symphony No. 2
for solos, choir & orchestra, text: Friedrich Hölderlin

Chamber music

  • Farewell song
for viola & harp
  • The Flow of Life (Blake Picture IV)
for 14 players
  • The seasons
for soprano, flute, viola & harp
  • Three dances
for xylophone
  • epitaph
for piano
  • Fantasia
for saxophone quartet
  • Piano trio 1 & 2
  • Lyric composition
for flute, oboe, violin, violoncello & harpsichord
  • Six poems by Alexander Blok
for mezzo-soprano & piano
  • Six poems by William Blake
for high voice & organ
  • serenade
for oboe, alto saxophone & violoncello
  • String Quartet No. 2
  • Sonata for bassoon & piano
  • The Visions of Coleridge
for mezzo-soprano & 10 players
  • Trio sacrum
for 3 percussionists
  • Wonderful stories
11 children's songs for soprano & 5 instruments

Web links

Commons : Dmitri Smirnov  - collection of pictures, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Levon Hakobian: Music of the Soviet Era: 1917-1991 . 2nd Edition. Routledge, London, New York 2017, ISBN 978-1-4724-7108-6 , pp. 289 .
  2. Скончался композитор Дмитрий Смирнов. Retrieved April 9, 2020 (Russian).
  3. Композитор из Беларуси Дмитрий Смирнов умер от коронавируса в Великобритании. In: belnovosti. April 10, 2020 (Russian).;