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Entries / Jazz


Categories / Art/Music, Theatre

JAZZ. Instrumental groups, dance and concert jazz music on city stages, appeared in Leningrad in the late 1920s. On April 28, 1927 the hall of the Capella hosted the debut concert of L.Y. Teplitsky's First Concert Jazz-Band. A year later G.V. Landsberg and B.I. Krupyshev put together their own bands (Jazz-Capella and Blue Jazz, respectively). However, L.O. Utesov's Tea-Jazz band enjoyed the greatest popularity. Its first performance took place on the stage of the Maly Opera Theatre (now the M.P. Mussorgsky Opera and Ballet Theatre) on March 8, 1929. Tea-Jazz's theatrical show programmes - Killed by Convention, Jazz at the Turn, and Music Shop (which served as a prototype for the movie Cheerful Guys), all performed on the Music Hall's stage - have largely determined the further development of variety-song jazz in the USSR. In the 1930-40s such performers as E.F. Kempfer, A.V. Semenov, V.F. Koralli and B.A. Petrovsky followed the variety-jazz tradition, while instrumental dance music was played by the jazz orchestras of the Leningrad Radio under the direction of Y.B. Skomorovsky and N.G. Minkh. A significant role in the popularisation of foreign jazz music is attributed to radio programmes presented by writer S.A. Kolbasyev. In the late 1950s - early 1960s, A.M. Blekhman's Orchestra (musical directors A.V. Kalvarsky and O.N. Khromushin) presented theatrical variety-shows, while supporters of improvisational jazz gathered around amateur jazz-clubs D-58 (the first club in the USSR), the club of the State Leningrad University, Kamerton (Tuning Fork), Vostok (East) and Kvadrat (Square). In 1965-66 the city witnessed the first jazz festivals; bands who won prizes included Leningrad Dixieland, The G.L. Golstein Quintet and the R.S. Kunsman Quartet. In the following years, I.V. Weinstein's Orchestra kept jazz music popular, bringing together the best instrumentalists and arrangers in Leningrad. Other popular venues included concert-lectures organized by and conducted at the Kvadrat Jazz-club (at the S.M. Kirov Recreation Centre), The Club of Lovers of Modern Music (the Recreation Centre of the Leningrad Council), and the Lenigrad Concert Hall (13 Arsenalnaya Embankment). Jazz music gained a foothold on the philharmonic stage through several annual festivals, including The Rhythms of Autumn (1978-93), Jazz over the Neva (1987-91) and Open Music (1991-93). In 1989 D.S. Goloshchekin set up the first philharmonic society of jazz music in the country (the Jazz Philharmonic Hall, at 27 Zagorodny Avenue), and in 1994 he launched a jazz festival called Swing of the White Night, which has since been held annually. In the 1990s, various jazz clubs began to operate, such as the JFC Jazz Club (37 Shpalernaya Street) as well as numerous jazz cafes (Jimmy Hendrix, Neo-Jazz-Club, Take Five). Leningrad-St. Petersburg has hosted many world-famous stars of jazz music, including D. Ellington, G. Burton, J. McLaughlin, and B. Taylor. St. Petersburg jazz is distinguished by a diversity of styles and forms. Traditional jazz (Dixieland and swing) is played by Leningrad Dixieland, A.D. Kanunnikov's Ensemble, and Golstein's Orchestra, The Saxophones of St. Petersburg; modern improvisational jazz (bee-bop, hard bop, bossa nova) is performed by multi-instrumentalist Goloshchekin, pianist A.V. Kondakov, saxophone player M.I. Kostyushkin, and guitar player G.C. Bagirov, while free composition jazz is represented by pianist S.A. Kurekhin and trumpet-player V.B. Gayvoronsky. Jazz-rock, funk and fusion are performed by such bands as Doo Bop Sound, and Soft Emotion. Jazz musicians are trained at the Popular and Jazz Department of the M.P. Mussorgsky School of Music, and the Department of Popular Musical Art of the University of Arts and Culture.

References: Фейертаг В. Б. Джаз от Ленинграда до Петербурга: Время и судьбы. Фестивали джаза. Кто есть кто. СПб., 1999; Васюточкин Г. С. Джазовый Петербург, ХХ век. СПб., 2001.

V. B. Feyertag.

Bagirov Gasan Chingizovich
Blekhman Alexander Mikhailovich
Burton Gary
Ellington Duke (real name Edward)
Gayvoronsky Vyacheslav Borisovich
Goloshchekin David Semenovich
Golstein Gennady Lvovich
Kalvarsky Anatoly Vladimirovich
Kanunnikov Alexsey Dmitrievich
Kempfer E.F.
Khromushin Oleg Nikolaevich
Kirov (real name Kostrikov) Sergey Mironovich
Kolbasyev Sergey Adamovich
Kondakov Andrey Vladimirovich
Koralli (Kemper) Vladimir Filippovich
Kostyushkin Mikhail I.
Krupyshev Boris Ivanovich
Kunsman Roman Shaevich
Kurekhin Sergey Anatolievich
Landsberg Georgy Vladimirovich
McLaughlin John
Minkh Nikolay Grigorievich
Mussorgsky Modest Petrovich
Petrovsky B.A.
Semenov Alexsey Vladimirovich
Skomorovsky Yakov Borisovich
Taylor Billy
Teplitsky Leopold Yakovlevich
Utesov Leonid Osipovich (real name Weisbein Lazar Iosifovich)
Weinstein Iosif Vladimirovich

Arsenalnaya Embankment/Saint Petersburg, city, house 13
Shpalernaya St./Saint Petersburg, city, house 37
Zagorodny Avenue/Saint Petersburg, city, house 27

Фейертаг В. Б. Джаз от Ленинграда до Петербурга: Время и судьбы. Фестивали джаза. Кто есть кто. СПб., 1999
Васюточкин Г. С. Джазовый Петербург, ХХ век. СПб., 2001

The subject Index
Glinka Capella
Mussorgsky Opera and Ballet Theatre
Music Hall
University of Culture and Arts, St. Petersburg State