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Songs

Songs

Iunoshu, gor’ko rydaia, 'A youth and a maiden' (1936) Op. 46 no.2


Part of a series or song cycle:

Four Romances on Poems by Pushkin (Op. 46)


Iunoshu, gor’ko rydaia, 'A youth and a maiden'

Iunoshu, gor’ko rydaia,
Revnivaia deva branila.
K nei na plecho preklonen,
Iunosha vdrug zadremal.
Deva totchas umolkla,
Son iego legkii leleia,
I ulybalas’ iemu,
Tikhie slezy liya.

A youth and a maiden

Sobbing bitterly, a jealous maiden
Upbraided a youth.
Leaning on her shoulder,
He suddenly dozed off.
All at once, the maiden fell silent,
Lulling him as he gently slept,
And she smiled at him,
Whilst shedding silent tears.

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Composer

Dmitri Shostakovich was a Russian composer and pianist. He achieved fame in the Soviet Union, although later developed a more complex and difficult relationship with the government. As a composer, he combined a variety of different musical techniques into his works, and his music is characterised by sharp contrast, grotesque elements, and ambivalent tonality. 

 

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Poet

Alexander Sergeyevich Pushkin (6 June 1799 – 10 February 1837) was a Russian poet, playwright, and novelist of the Romantic era who is considered by many to be the greatest Russian poet and the founder of modern Russian literature.

Pushkin was born into Russian nobility in Moscow. His father, Sergey Lvovich Pushkin, belonged to Pushkin noble families. A maternal great-grandfather was African-born general Abram Petrovich Gannibal. He published his first poem at the age of 15, and was widely recognized by the literary establishment by the time of his graduation from the Tsarskoye Selo Lyceum. Upon graduation from the Lycee, Pushkin recited his controversial poem "Ode to Liberty", one of several that led to his being exiled by Tsar Alexander the First. While under the strict surveillance of the Tsar's political police and unable to publish, Pushkin wrote his most famous play, the drama Boris Godunov. His novel in verse, Eugene Onegin, was serialized between 1825 and 1832.

Pushkin was fatally wounded in a duel with his brother-in-law, Georges-Charles de Heeckeren d'Anthès, also known as Dantes-Gekkern, a French officer serving with the Chevalier Guard Regiment, who attempted to seduce the poet's wife, Natalia Pushkina.

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