Eduard Artemiev, born in 1937, is a member of the magnificent generation of Russian composers who made a name for themselves in the “thawing” 1960s. He is the younger contemporary and colleague of the giants of the Russian avantgarde whose bold acoustic quests were badly compatible with a successful career and comfortable life in the Soviet Union. However, having grown out of the same professional environment and having processed the pulsating ideas of that era, Eduard Artemiev went on a completely unique creative journey that made him incomparable with anyone else. His music is a separate galaxy unlike any other.
It may be hard to believe but the People’s Artist of Russia and the winner of numerous government prizes Eduard Artemiev can be called both Russia’s most popular and most underappreciated composer of the second half of the 20th century. Thanks to the many years of work in the cinema and collaboration with Russia’s brightest film directors (Andrei Tarkovsky, Andron Konchalovsky, Nikita Mikhalkov and others), his music is popular, famous and well-loved. As part of the Soviet cinema’s “golden fund,” it has firmly established itself in the everyday life and sounds familiar to this day. At the same time, as has already happened in the history of music, popularity of certain melodies that became smash hits hinders objective evaluation of the overall portfolio of the composer known as “Russia’s Ennio Morricone.” Unfortunately, Eduard Artemiev’s input as an original innovator, electronic music pioneer and initiator of bold experiments in building bridges between the traditions of academism and light musical genres such as rock, jazz and folk, is much less known and appreciated.
As a composer, Eduard Artemiev is a combination of unreconcilable personas. He is simultaneously a devoted traditionalist, who gingerly treasures devotion to clear emotional melodies and bright timbral colors of impressionism, and a voracious thinker and analyst who seeks out innovations, comes up with philosophical concepts and works out engineering solutions for his work with harmonies and concords. His best-known works for the cinema fully expose both sides of the composer’s unique talent, and they will be performed at the SOUND UP concert by the principal interpreters of his music: the Russian State Symphony Cinema Orchestra directed by Sergei Skripka, and the Intrada new-generation vocal ensemble.
Varvarka st, 6/4