Sergei Nikiforowitsch Vasilenko

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Sergei Nikiforovich Vasilenko ( Russian Сергей Никифорович Василенко ., Scientific transliteration Sergei Vasilenko Nikiforovič ; born 18 jul. / The thirtieth March  1872 greg. In Moscow ; † 11. March 1956 ) was a Russian composer and conductor .


Vasilenko received his first music lessons in 1888 and in the following years took private lessons from Alexander Grechaninov, among others . In 1891 he began studying law in Moscow, which he graduated in 1895. From 1895 he studied piano and composition at the Moscow Conservatory , where he a. a. Was a student of Sergei Taneyev . 1901 finished his studies with the gold medal. From 1903 to 1905 he was a conductor at the Mamontow Opera in Moscow before he was appointed teacher of composition and orchestration at the Moscow Conservatory in 1906 . Just one year later, Wassilenko became a professor at this site, which he remained until his death (apart from a brief interruption during the Second World War). Among his students were Nikolai Roslawez , Anatoly Alexandrow and Nikolai Rakow .

From 1907 to 1917 he directed the "Historical Concerts" of the Russian Music Society in Moscow, which he founded. After the October Revolution he made extensive trips through the Soviet Union to get to know the music of different peoples. At the same time, he continued to give many concerts and was active in public positions, such as on Moscow Radio . Vasilenko was awarded as a People's Artist of the Russian (1940) and Uzbek SSR (1939). He was also a doctor of art and received the Stalin Prize in 1947 for his ballet "Mirandolina".

Audio language

Wassilenko's work can be divided into two periods. At first he was strongly influenced by contemporary trends and was under the spell of Symbolism and Impressionism . In the course of the 1920s, however, he turned away from this direction and became particularly interested in folk music from various countries. In addition to Russian folklore, he dealt with the music of the Far East, so that certain exoticisms found their way into his work, as well as with Uzbek, Turkmen and Ukrainian folklore. Sometimes he also used folk instruments in his works (for example in his concerto for balalaika and orchestra or his Third Symphony).

Wassilenko's music is deeply rooted in the tradition of Russian art music of the 19th century, but goes beyond this, especially in terms of harmony, although it always moves within the framework of the expanded tonality . Due to his activity as a conductor, he composed many orchestral works that are characterized by a great wealth of timbres and skillful instrumentation. All in all, Wassilenko is a typical representative of the development of Russian music in his time. His work ranges from the currents widespread in Tsarist Russia at the turn of the century to the aesthetics of socialist realism propagated in the Soviet Union .


  • Orchestral works
    • Symphony No. 1 in G minor op.10 (1904-06)
    • Symphony No.2 in F major op.22 (1913)
    • Symphony No. 3 in A major op.81 "Italian" for domra, balalaika orchestra and wind orchestra (1934)
    • Symphony No. 4 in D minor op.82 "Arctic" (1934)
    • Symphony No.5 in E minor, Op. 123 (1947)
    • "The Garden of Death", symphonic poem op.12 (1908)
    • "Flight of Witches" op.15 (1909)
    • Chinese Suite No.1 op.60 (1928)
    • Chinese Suite No.2 op.70 (1931)
    • Indian Suite op.42B based on the ballet "Noja" (1927)
    • Uzbek Suite op.104 (1942)
    • "Ukraine", Suite op.121 (1945)
  • Concerts
    • Piano Concerto in F sharp minor op.128 (1949)
    • Violin Concerto in D minor op.25 (1913)
    • Violoncello Concerto in A major op.112 (1944/45)
    • "In Spring", Suite for flute and orchestra op.138 (1954)
    • Clarinet Concerto in B flat minor op.135 (1953)
    • Trumpet Concerto in C minor op.113 "Concert Poem" (1945)
    • Horn Concerto in B flat major op.136 (1953)
    • Harp Concerto in F major op.126 (1949)
    • Balalaika Concerto in C major op.63 (1929)
  • Ballets
    • "Noija" op.42 (1923)
    • "Iossif, the beautiful" op.50 (1925)
    • "In Sunrays" op.51 (1926)
    • "Mirandolina" op.122 (1946)
  • Vocal music
    • "The legend of the great city of Kitesch and the quiet lake Swetojar", opera op.5 (1903)
    • "Son of the Sun", opera op.62 (1929)
    • "Christoph Columbus", opera op.80 (1933)
    • "Schneesturm", opera op.98 (1938, together with Muchtar Aschrafi )
    • "The Great Canal", opera op.101 (1939, together with Muchtar Aschrafi)
    • "Cantata for the 20th Anniversary of the October Revolution" op.92 (1937)
    • "Suworow", opera (1942)
    • Songs
    • Folk song arrangements
  • Chamber music
    • String Quartet No.1 in A major op.3 (1901)
    • String Quartet No.2 in E minor op.58 (1927)
    • Piano trio in A flat major op.74 (1932)
    • Viola Sonata in D minor op.46 (1923)
    • Quartet on Turkmen Themes for flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon and percussion op.65 (1930)

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Sergei Wasilenko - biography. Retrieved April 13, 2018 (Russian).