Abdokov Yuri

Nikolay Myaskovsky: ''Let not your heart be troubled…''. Life as an experience of releasing vocation

Abdokov Yuri (2021) "Nikolay Myaskovsky: ''Let not your heart be troubled…''. Life as an experience of releasing vocation ", Vestnik Pravoslavnogo Sviato-Tikhonovskogo gumanitarnogo universiteta. Seriia V : Voprosi istorii i teorii hristianskogo iskusstva, 2021, vol. 42, pp. 79-114 (in Russian).

DOI of the paper: 10.15382/sturV202142.79-114


The article deals with the most important components of the creative biography of Nikolay Yakovlevich Myaskovsky (1881–1950). A whole corpus of literature is devoted to the life and work of the composer. But even at the beginning of the 21st century, the portrait of one of the most prominent Russian musicians remains incomplete, and in many lifetime and posthumous studies it is deliberately distorted, at least partially. There is no doubt that the new biography of the composer should be based not on ideological cliches that illusorily “reconcile” Myaskovsky with a certain social and aesthetic reality, but on his music (outside of pseudo-“conservative” and false-“liberal” attributions), the grandiose and mostly unexplored archive of the artist, as well as the testimonies of those who were really close to Myaskovsky professionally and spiritually. For the fi rst time, documents from the composer’s archive are published, as well as memoirs of his outstanding students and contemporaries of diff erent generations, i.e. N. I. Peyko, B. A. Tchaikovsky, K. S. Khachaturian, M. S. Rostropovich, recorded by the author of the article. Unique epistolary materials and vivid memoir notes allow us to understand and in some cases — for the fi rst time — to verify individual facts and phenomena without which a full-fledged portrait of the composer is unthinkable. Thus, the sources presented in the article open up the possibility of comprehending a topic excluded from most offi cial biographies of the composer, i.e. not only the history of the formation of the versatile temperament of the artist-aristocrat, but also the formation of his soul. The same applies to the events of the late 40s and the fearless position of Myaskovsky during the “antiformalist campaign”. The study of historical artifacts and their extrapolation to the composer’s creative heritage allows us to formulate the main concepts of Myaskovsky’s unique artistic ethos, which is very far from both the arrogant orientation “for the initiated” and the false “academism”, which often, and most importantly, mistakenly explain the characteristic features of the perception of the composer’s music today.


Nikolay Myaskovsky, Nikolay Peyko, Boris Tchaikovsky, Karen Khachaturian, composer, biography, creation, ethos


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Information about the author

Abdokov Yuri

Academic Degree: Candidate of Sciences* in Art Criticism;
Academic Rank: Professor;
Place of work: Tchaikovsky Moscow State Conservatory; 13/6 Bolshaya Nikitskaya Street Moscow, 125009, Russian Federation;
Post: professor;
ORCID: 0000-0001-9033-3279;
Email: abdokovgeorg@mail.ru.

*According to the International Standard Classification of Education (ISCED) 2011, the degree of Candidate of Sciences (Cand.Sc.) belongs to ISCED level 8 — "doctoral or equivalent", together with PhD, DPhil, D.Lit, D.Sc, LL.D, Doctorate or similar.