2023 Author: Leah Sherlock | [email protected]. Last modified: 2023-11-27 12:28
Known replica from the amphitheater of the concert hall. Tchaikovsky on October 23, 2018 before the anniversary performance of the academic Ural State Folk Choir:
Look, they are sitting out of Pyatnitsky, competitors have come to listen.
When Lev Christiansen was offered to head the choir to them in 1960. Pyatnitsky with a move to Moscow and the corresponding preferences, he refused. To today's showmen, the reason will seem stupid: the head of the Sverdlovsk Conservatory and the founder of the Ural Choir did not like the performing style of the most eminent Soviet singing group: he believed that there were problems with genuine nationality.
Remark from the queue to the wardrobe at the end:
As you wish, I liked the Ural people more than Pyatnitsky last time! Such a mood, such color!
Folk choir is…
Fashion trends to create cover versions of folk tunes based on the original, on the one hand, popularize folklore,on the other hand, they distort the true melody of the sound. In 1945, Christiansen asked to keep manners and local features in the originals, he really wanted the choir he founded to become a reserve of Ural folklore.
Today, like all 75 years, the people of the Urals do not strive for easy success, they do not try to win applause with every number of the program. They rarely make pauses, not demanding applause and even stopping them so that another story from life is not interrupted. To convey a spark - true, real, to wake up the soul - this is the covenant that the vocalists, musicians and dancers of the Ural Folk Choir fulfill to this day.
Urals are special
The costumes of the artists are not full of rhinestones and bear little resemblance to the concert clothes of celebrities: they are sewn according to the canons of the Ural costume. Sundresses and dresses, which have always been decorated in moderation, today very accurately emphasize the style of the hinterland and do not turn the performance into a podium show of "diamonds".
The absence of synthetic music, minus soundtracks touches the audience. No “plywood”, sound gadgets and effects, only the professionalism of accordionists, balalaika players, domrists. There is a flute, a harp, a double bass and a drum set. The Ensemble of Folk Instruments, where a third are laureates of all-Russian and international competitions, is located in the back of the stage, behind the backs of the singers. But, invisible to the audience, they are full participants in the performance, only once performing an instrumental number in their own arrangement. Amazingly, they play without music sheets and music stands - from memory.
The brightest and most moving part is the choreographic group. This is where one could give out modern movements stylized as folk, but even here the compositions are carefully built from the pattern of folk elements of Russian, Ukrainian, Bashkir, Tatar dances. Unless the Mansi shamans are a kind of fantasy, and the design of the dance is built in a modern way, but the national color is in the first place. And they light up no less than modern ballet!
The basis of the line-up are the vocalists, who cannot be confused with anyone else. The fact is that they sing in their usual dialect with "okany", and this original pronunciation immediately makes the vocal ensemble exclusive.
The folk choir makes the repertoire unique, where the old chants of the Urals, collected from the villages by Lev Christiansen, have been preserved. There are no fashionable pop hits at all, except for our own.
The stage mobility of the singers deserves a special mention. They actively participate in productions and skits, create dance extras and lead round dances themselves, combining with singing. These creative people have turned the notion of choirs, which usually stand powerfully and statically in one place.
The beginning of a glorious journey
How carefully they treat the repertoire here, so carefully they keep their history. Not only the names of the creators and leaders remember the tours and "foreign countries": the history of the singing ensemble recorded the premieres of songs, the namespoets and composers of the Urals, their photographs. Veteran Valentina Blinova has been another historiographer since 1975.
In the terrible year of 1943, when the Soviet Union opposed fascism in the Second World War, a Russian song choir was created by order of the Bureau of the Sverdlovsk Regional Committee of the Bolshevik Communist Party. Musicologist and collector of folklore Lev Khristiansen, choreographer Olga Knyazeva, choirmaster Neonilla Malginova stood at the origins. Singers and dancers were recruited from the people: from the cities and villages of the region came collective farmers, librarians, turners, nurses who had passed the conservatory "casting".
November 12, 1944 the first concert took place. The program included old motives from the Urals (you can still hear them today), then there were tours on the fronts of the Great Patriotic War. For the first time on the stage of the Moscow Concert Hall. Tchaikovsky concert of the folk Ural choir was held in 1947. Tours around the cities of the USSR, the Union republics and the native Urals, performances at the Bolshoi Theater, Central House of Arts (1950) helped to gain professionalism, test the repertoire and their strength.
The first trip abroad brought the team the title of laureate of the 1st degree. It happened at the III World Festival of Youth and Students in Berlin. A German newspaper wrote an enthusiastic response, recording that the big dance caused a ten-minute (!) ovation. The Soviet anthem of democratic youth was sung by the whole hall in different languages.
They are made for each other
This statement is not about the family - about Evgeny Rodyginand Ural folk choir. Having received a serious wound on the eve of the Victory, Senior Sergeant Rodygin in the hospital tied an accordion to himself and spoke to the wounded. He wanted to become a composer, so he entered the conservatory. It was there that Christiansen noticed him and invited him to his place. Veteran artists say that the works of Yevgeny Rodygin made the vocalists famous and popular. In the second half of the twentieth century, it was very difficult to get tickets for their solo album - always a full house, always a standing ovation.
In 1953 the composer writes "Ural rowanberry". The song was not immediately accepted for work, but when it sounded, it became a hit and the hallmark of the choir. The composer writes a lot, it's interesting, but what about the nationality? First, he works with texts collected from the villages of the Urals. Secondly, the melody of his songs is such that the sophisticated viewer did not immediately recognize the author's work, many of his works are considered folk: “Bird cherry sways under the window”, “Sverdlovsk W altz”, “White Snow”, etc.
The team celebrated its first big anniversary (10 years) in Romania, by that time their program was listened to by the fourth European country. Over the 75 years of its existence, the songs of the Ural Folk Choir have been listened to in more than 50 countries of the world, some of them have visited more than once.
In 1965, the Urals performed in Czechoslovakia for the first time: the Sverdlovsk region became a twin of this country, and the choir, as a goodwill ambassador, toured seven times, first in Czechoslovakia, then in the Czech Republic. It is difficult to understand how this work is perceived oneast, but most of these territories have welcomed them more than once. Kim Il Sung personally invited to Korea.
France, Italy, East Germany, Japan applauded the artists. They conquered Vietnam with their vocals and dances. Together with the dancers, "Semera" was danced by the Turks and stern Norwegians. Many times they became laureates, diploma winners of international and Russian festivals. This group, the only one of the musical ones, performed in front of the liquidators of the Chernobyl accident during the tragedy in 1989.
In 1996, the team received the title of academic (in Russia there are about 20 of them - this is the elite). The residents of the Urals warmly and solemnly celebrated the 100th anniversary of the birth of Lev Khristiansen, whose luxurious heritage they still use to this day. Three years ago, this team represented Russia at the World Festival of Cultures in India. In 2016, the tour celebrated the 60th anniversary of the hit "White Snow". In 2018, the unspoken anthem of the choir "Uralskaya Ryabinushka" turned 65 years old. The author - composer Yevgeny Rodygin took part in the celebration.
The long journey of the song and dance group was not easy: together with the country, they experienced collapse and tragedies, perestroika and wild capitalism. But, to the credit of the Urals, they never turned onto more profitable paths, "for the needs of the crowd." Their road was straight, that's why they became the standard for the scenic display of the folklore of the Urals.
More than one thousand songs during the existence of the folk Ural choir they revealed to the world. Today there are more than a hundred in the repertoire, but these are already different productions,wiring, costumes. The originality and style remain unchanged - the soft manner of singing, the lyrical sound, the specific dialect. There is no wide range of three octaves here - this is not characteristic of folk singing, but the purity of sound, coherence and strength are present.
As well as 75 years ago, the repertoire is based on diverse works (fiction, lyrical, wedding, dance). Of course, the Urals sing new works by local authors, and the dances of the ballet group turn the songs into mini-performances.
The folk group participates in Orthodox events, creates patriotic programs. Love for the Fatherland is a bridge from the "Ural mountain ash" to songs about the whole country. There are other patriotic compositions in the repertoire of the Ural folk choir "Mother Russia". In May, a new composition started - “My Soul is Russia”, in June they sang for the participants of the World Cup, in October they stood on the stage of the concert hall named after. Tchaikovsky, and the Moscow beau monde stood up and did not let go.
Uralians are looking for new tunes, other forms of presentation, other arrangement possibilities. But at the same time they remain true to cultural traditions. The State Academic Ural Folk Choir remains the guardian of the original culture of the Urals, promotes folklore in all its manifestations. His creative style is unique and in demand.
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