Life Edit Lyapunov was born in Yaroslavl in After the death of his father, Mikhail Lyapunov , when he was about eight, Sergei, his mother, and his two brothers one of them was Aleksandr Lyapunov , later a notable mathematician went to live in the larger town of Nizhny Novgorod. There he attended the grammar school along with classes of the newly formed local branch of the Russian Musical Society. On the recommendation of Nikolai Rubinstein , the Director of the Moscow Conservatory of Music, he enrolled in that institution in His main teachers were Karl Klindworth piano; a former pupil of Franz Liszt , and Sergei Taneyev composition; a former pupil of Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky and his successor at the Conservatory. He graduated in , more attracted by the nationalist elements in music of the New Russian School than by the more cosmopolitan approach of Tchaikovsky and Taneyev.
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Russian romanticism, existing alongside the mainstream of Western music and having very specific national characteristics, was able to bridge the turn of the century. Romantic tradition and ideals were so solid that even the works of the pioneers of the "new music", such as Rimsky-Korsakov, Scriabin, Stravinsky, were deeply rooted in the aesthetics of romanticism. The smooth transition infused the "new music" with forms and ideas of truly Russian nature.
Russia held firm in the struggle against new ideas, charged with energy in the effort to destroy the old world of romanticism with its stereotyped forms, its old symbols, old ideas and methods of composition. Some composers, e. Medtner and Rachmaninoff, did not accept the creative ideas and methods of the new movement, remained faithful to the "high and beautiful", while others, like Prokofiev and Stravinsky moving in different directions, paid tribute to the newest trends of modern music.
It was the time of great names firmly connected with the democratic tendencies of the period. There was an impressive number of composers who kept alive and developed further the main Russian tradition, such as Liadov, Arensky, Taneyev and, of course, "The Mighty Handful" led by Balakirev.
The powerful body of musical critics influenced greatly, in fact formed Russian taste, music and musical education including such outstanding musicians as Serov, Larosh and Stasov. Sergei Michailovich Lyapunov belonged to the leading composers of that period.
He was born on November 30th, according to the new calendar, November 18th, Two years after graduation, he moved to St. Petersburg where he was close to the circle "The Mighty Handful" under Balakirev. He became one of the first teachers at the "Free Music School" and its director from to Between and , Lyapunov taught piano and composition at the St. Petersburg Conservatory. His artistic and aesthetic ideals and convictions prompted him to join a scientific expedition researching ancient Russian folklore.
He was an excellent virtuoso pianist and conductor. He died in Paris on November 8th, The name of Lyapunov and his music, formerly well renowned throughout the Russian musical world, is now forgotten, though it still appears in music encyclopedias and reference works on musical history.
His major compositions were piano music, i. It follows traditional patterns established by Chopin and Liszt during the 19th century and continued by Rachmaninoff, Debussy and Scriabin during the 20th century. The term "Study" becomes somewhat arbitrary, possibly referring to a variety of sources; it is closely related to "Prelude", and might also be called "Descriptive Mood" or "Etude-Tableaux", titles used subsequently for the famous compositions by Rachmaninoff.
Apparently, Liszt planned to compose twenty-four studies in all keys but, starting with C-major, moving downwards by the circle of fifths and including parallel minor keys, he reached only as far as B-Minor. The concept was eventually realized by Lyapunov, who however did not refer to the actual origin of his musical attempt for reasons of modesty.
His twelve studies continue the principle of the "circle of fifths" from F-sharp to E-Minor. Two idols of Lyapunov, Balakirev and Liszt, influenced his music decisively, to the extent of his creations becoming a symbol of the union of those two inspirational sources: the West and Russia. Thus Stasov called him "Black Balakirev", not only because of his physical resemblance, but also because of the somber quality of his early works due to the influence of his oldest friend.
Western in its "grand style concertante" and in true keeping with western piano romanticism, its classical clear forms, programme basis and subjects of it: woods, water, wind.
Yet it is Russian in its interest to the Orient, images of Caucasus and Russian fairy tales, in use of the authentic melodies. These two lines exist simultaneously. They do not resist or oppose each other, but, on the contrary, are united by musical contemplation and by the absence of active, heroical impulse.
And at the end of the cycle this successful union is proclaimed most convincingly in the splendid and magnificent "Elegie", in which both themes merge within an apotheosis symbolizing the union between European and Russian artistic traditions. As in many other instances, music considered secondary for a certain period of time remained in the shadow of works of great and renowned composers, buried in oblivion, but is eventually rediscovered and recognized in its true and lasting artistic value.
12 Études d'exécution transcendante, Op.11 (Lyapunov, Sergey)
Here he speaks to those works and the pairing. This cycle is the quintessence of his artistic vision. Liszt tried and succeeded in composing pieces where his spirit, that knew no boundaries, went into spheres where only artistic being is allowed to enter. Of course, he used the language that he adopted. And Lyapunov, a Russian romantic composer and adorer of Liszt, completed the cycle.
24 Transcendental Etudes: Liszt & Lyapunov
Life[ edit ] Lyapunov was born in Yaroslavl in After the death of his father, Mikhail Lyapunov , when he was about eight, Sergei, his mother, and his two brothers one of them was Aleksandr Lyapunov , later a notable mathematician went to live in the larger town of Nizhny Novgorod. There he attended the grammar school along with classes of the newly formed local branch of the Russian Musical Society. On the recommendation of Nikolai Rubinstein , the Director of the Moscow Conservatory of Music, he enrolled in that institution in