This week we have a guest post by Ekaterina Shapinskaya. She's talking about Mikhail Glinka, a new composer on this blog. We are listening the song Poputnaya pesnya, performed by Georgi Nelepp and Matvei Sakharov Thank you very much, Ekaterina!
Rain, Steam and Speed - W. Turner
M. Glinka (lyrics by N.Kukolnik) Proshaniye s Peterburgom (“Farewell to Petersburg”), 1840, is a vocal cycle of 12 songs or ”romances” including the most popular themes of Romanticism: love and jealousy, beauty of nature, sad remembrances, Oriental exotics and glorifying friendship. The beauty of Russian landscape is reflected in Zhavoronok (The Lark), and passion and jealousy of the lover in Bolero. My Fair Maiden. Mikhail Glinka (1804-1957), the great Russian composer was known for his “romances” (Russian equivalent of Lieder), and Nestor Kukolnik (1809-1869) was one of the most popular poets of the time.
Rusian Lieder combine the musical style of romanticism, which was formed in Russia largely under the influence of German Romantic poets, and the more popular genre of lyrical song popular both in the capital and in province. Glinka brought his strong individual touch into this genre and created some great works in which music and poetry blend harmoniously. He also used different national music forms, such as barcarola, ballad, bolero. The composer liked to sing his “romances” himself, and the contemporaries said that it was the expression of his soul. He used to perform them, accompanying himself, in the house of Kukolnik where artistic public of Petersburg gathered. The last song of the cycle is devoted to the company of friends which is the greatest inspiration for the Poet indignant about the hypocracy of the world around.
Before composing his cycle Glinka thought of going abroad for getting new inspiration, but after it was finished he changed his decision and published them in “Odeon” publishing house – the success was such that additional copies had to be printed.
Emotions and reflections united by the theme of journey disclose artistic and emotional climate of the Russian capital of the middle of the XIX century. Poputnaya pesnya is one of the well known songs of the cycle dedicated to the inauguration of railway between Moscow and StPetersburg and celebrating the new feeling of speed.
Dy'm stolbom kipit, dy'mitsya paroxod!
Pestrota, razgul, volnen`e, ozhidan`e, neterpen`e!
Veselitsya i likuet ves` narod.
I by'stree, shibche voli poezd mchitsya v chistom pole.
Net, tajnaya duma by'stree letit,
I serdce mgnoven`ya schitaya stuchit.
Kovarny'e dumy' mel`kayut dorogoj,
I shepchesh` nevol`no:
Kak dolgo, kak dolgo?
Ne vozdux, ne zelen` stradal`cza manyat.
Tam yasny'e ochi tak yarko goryat.
Tak polny'j blazhenstva minuty' svidan`ya,
Tak sladki nadezhdoj chasy' rasstavan`ya.
The video description includes an English translation. Here you are the Russian lyrics:
Дым столбом кипит, дымится пароход!
Пестрота, разгул, волненье, ожиданье, нетерпенье!
Веселится и ликует весь народ.
И быстрее, шибче воли поезд мчится в чистом поле.
Нет, тайная дума быстрее летит,
И сердце мгновенья считая стучит.
Коварные думы мелькают дорогой,
И шепчешь невольно:
Как долго, как долго?
Не воздух, не зелень страдальца манят.
Там ясные очи так ярко горят.
Так полный блаженства минуты свиданья,
Так сладки надеждой часы расставанья.