Khachaturian, Aram Il'yich



Aram Khachaturian was one of the most popular composers of the Soviet period of Russian history, successfully managing to combine the folk music of his native Armenia with the more formal Russian musical tradition as represented by Rimsky-Korsakov. Born in 1903, he showed early signs of a love of music, but his formal training did not begin until 1922, when he was admitted to the famous Gnessin Institute in Moscow (his family having moved there the previous year) and continued at the Moscow Conservatory with the eminent composer Myaskovsky. The first major work of Khachaturian to be performed was his Symphony No. 1 (1934). International acclaim greeted his rambunctious Piano Concerto of 1936, the success of which was quickly duplicated with the Violin Concerto of 1940, and throughout the 1940s Khachaturian composed many successful works, such as the ballet Gayaneh with its famous “Sabre Dance” (1942), his Symphony No. 2 (1943) and Cello Concerto (1946).

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