Music and Art in 19th Century Russia

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  • Topic: Russia, Kiev, Reply of the Zaporozhian Cossacks
  • Pages : 3 (1087 words )
  • Download(s) : 94
  • Published : April 29, 2013
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Russia in the 19th century was a time of many changes and rapidly becoming a socialist environment. Such changes led to an incredible surge in the appreciation and support of new music and art. These surges did not go by unnoticed of course. The writers, musicians, and artists of this time have become common household names all across the world. As a musician, I was familiar with Borodin, Mussogorsky and Tchaikovsky long before studying Russian history. The same applies to Pushkin, Dostoyevsky, and Tolstoy in the world of literature and poetry. These artists, no matter how they portrayed their message, all had in common that they were empowering the average citizen of Russia. As discussed in class, Tolstoy preached that happiness lies in the life of a common man, while artists like Ilja Repin captured even the most hidden of emotions in his artwork of common folk and historical figures alike, and all the while the “Mighty Five” composers shared the common theme that their music was mostly based on folk tunes. There is no doubt that Russia is nearing a time of great change, the revolutionaries are fighting for the peoples’ empowerment and the younger generation is being educated by the philosophies of Karl Marx in Germany to support these ideas.

The surge of art and the complete change in style, with respect to the Russian Icons, begins in the 18th century with Peter the Great. During his time as a ruler, he promoted the European style of art and way of life and kick started the Russian Baroque period. The system Peter established highly influenced the education of art in schools and was controlled by the art institutions of St. Petersburg. This control continued for the next 100 years and it was not until after the time of Nicholas I, when censorship had reached a peak in response to the outcry of educated citizens and the rise of revolutionary groups, where we start to see change. Alexander II was responsible for many reforms in the mid 19th century. He...
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