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The subject index / Music Hall

Music Hall

Categories / Art/Music, Theatre/Stage, Cabaret, Variety Shows

MUSIC HALL (in Russian Muzik-kholl, based on a transliteration of the English). The first attempts to establish a Music Hall in St. Petersburg date back to 1913. In the autumn of 1928, The Circus Music-Hall was opened in the Opera Hall of the former Emperor Nicholas II People's House (4 Alexandrovsky Park). In 1929, it moved into the building of Palace-Theatre (13 Italyanskaya Street) and was renamed the Variety Theatre-Circus, to adopt the name of Leningrad Music-Hall shortly after. I.O. Dunaevsky performed the functions of the chief conductor. Co-operating with Tea-Jazz conducted by L.O. Utesov. Dunaevsky composed a number of variety song programmes. The Music Hall employed various eminent people, such as composer D.D. Shostakovich, ballet-masters F.V. Lopukhov and K.Y. Goleyzovsky, artist and stage director N.P. Akimov. The programmes of the Music Hall starred K.I. Shulzhenko, B.P. Chirkov, R.V. Zelenaya, N.K. Cherkasov, E.M. Granovskaya et al. The Music Hall was closed down in 1937 as part of the struggle against formalism, to resume its work 30 years later, due to the efforts made by stage director I.Y. Rakhlin. The basic genre of the Music Hall was singsong revues with dancing. Among the ballet-masters who collaborated with the Music Hall were I.D. Belsky and M.S. Godenko. Music for performances was composed by M.M. Kazhlaev, S.I. Pozhlakov and D.F. Tukhmanov, among others. The Music Hall has a permanent company which consists of a ballet troupe, orchestra and solo performers. The latter include O.O. Vardasheva, I.N. Rudakova, S.N. Smetanin and A.N. Tukin. Its most popular programmes are: No One So Beautiful But You (1967), The Housewarming (1988), The Mad Century (1999), Apple Lady (2002). Since 1988, the Music Hall has come again to reside in the former Opera Hall (known as Velikan (Giant) movie theatre in 1950-88). In 1990, a school was attached to it.

References: Уварова Е. Д. Эстрадный театр: миниатюры, обозрения, мюзик-холлы (1917-1945). М., 1983. С. 195-239; Эстрада без парада. М., 1991. С. 35-44, 75-102.

Y. N. Kruzhnov.

Akimov Nikolay Pavlovich
Belsky Igor Dmitrievich
Cherkasov Nikolay Konstantinovich
Chirkov Boris Petrovich
Dunaevsky Isaak Osipovich
Godenko Mikhail Semenovich
Goleyzovsky Kasyan Yaroslavovich
Granovskaya Elena Mavrikievna
Kazhlaev Murad Magomedovich
Lopukhov Fedor Vasilievich
Nicholas II, Emperor
Pozhlakov Stanislav Ivanovich
Rakhlin Ilya Yakovlevich
Rudakova Irina Nikolaevna
Shostakovich Dmitry Dmitrievich
Shulzhenko Klavdia Ivanovna
Smetanin Sergey Nikolaevich
Tukhmanov David Fedorovich
Tukin A.N.
Utesov Leonid Osipovich (real name Weisbein Lazar Iosifovich)
Vardasheva Olga O.
Zelenaya Rina (Ekaterina) Vasilievna

Italyanskaya Street/Saint Petersburg, city, house 13

Уварова Е. Д. Эстрадный театр: миниатюры, обозрения, мюзик-холлы (1917-1945). М., 1983
Эстрада без парада. М., 1991


Amusement Establishments (entry)

AMUSEMENT ESTABLISHMENTS. At the beginning of the 18th century the prototype of amusement establishments were "garden entertainments" with music and dances, were held in the Summer Garden

Bogdanova-Chesnokova G.V. (1904-1983), singer

BOGDANOVA-CHESNOKOVA Glikeria Vasilievna (1904, St. Petersburg - 1983, Leningrad), musical comedy actress, People's Artist of the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic (1970). Made her debut in 1920 at the Alexandrinsky Theatre as Lucile in J

Cherkasov N.K., (1903-1966), actor

CHERKASOV Nikolay Konstantinovich (1903, St. Petersburg - 1966, Leningrad), actor, People's Artist of the USSR (1947). Graduated from the Leningrad Dramatics School in 1926

Dunaevsky I.O., (1900-1955), composer

DUNAEVSKY Isaak Osipovich (1900-1955), composer, pianist, director of music and theatrical groups, people's artist of the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic (1950). Graduated from Kharkov Conservatory, he lived in Leningrad in 1929-41


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

Miniatures Theatres (entry)

MINIATURES THEATRES, variety theatres with repertoires embracing all types and genres of theatrical art and concerts. In St. Petersburg, they emerged as clubs and theatre-cabarets

People's Houses (entry)

PEOPLE'S HOUSES, cultural and educational institutions of a club nature, meant mainly for workers and craftspeople. They were created in St. Petersburg from the early 1880s, as a rule, in the suburbs, subsidized by the Municipal Duma

Petrogradsky District

PETROGRADSKY DISTRICT, an administrative and territorial unit of St. Petersburg, with its administration located at 19 Bolshaya Monetnaya Street. The district was formed in 1917, and in 1936 the Primorsky District was separated from its territory

Rakhlin I.Y. (1922-2002), stage director

RAKHLIN Ilya Yakovlevich (1922-2002, St. Petersburg), director, actor, People's Artist of the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic (1984), Honoured Worker of the Arts of Kazakhstan (1951) and Northern Osetia (1965)

Shostakovich D.D., (1906-1975), composer

SHOSTAKOVICH Dmitry Dmitrievich (1906, St. Petersburg. - 1975), composer, pianist, pedagogue, People's Artist of the USSR (1954), Hero of Socialist Labor (1966). Honorary Doctor of Oxford (1958) and of many other foreign universities and academies

Utesov L.O., (1895-1982), singer

UTESOV Leonid Osipovich (real name Weisbein Lazar Iosifovich) (1895-1982), singer, actor, jazz band leader, People's Artist of the USSR (1965). Studied at the Faig Odessa Commercial School

Variety Theatre (Entry)

VARIETY THEATRE (from the French word varietes, from the Latin varietas - mixture) is the name for leisure programmes based on uniting various genres normally demonstrated at restaurants and cafes (they were supplemented with meal)

White Nights, festival

WHITE NIGHTS, A musical and theatrical festival succeeding the Leningrad Festival of Arts held from 1958 to 1963. The annual festival was conducted in Leningrad from 1964 to 1990, on 21-29 June

Yunger E.V. (1910-1999), actress

YUNGER Elena Vladimirovna (1910 - 1999, St. Petersburg), actress, People's Artist of the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic (1950). In 1925-30, she studied at the Leningrad Institute for Art History