By Laman Ismayilova
Azerbaijan's baritone Muslim Magomayev quickly became a cult figure that gave many concerts filling huge arenas all across the Soviet Union, while his albums sold millions. The King of Songs won the audience with his charisma and sincerity.
One of the Ukranian streets located in Dnipro city has been named after the prominent Azerbaijani singer Muslim Magomayev.
The relevant decision has been taken during the regular session of Dnipro city council. The March 8 Street in the Cathedral area will now be named in honor of Magomayev.
The mayor of Dnipro Boris Filatov said that such a decision of the city authorities is a kind of a gift to the Azerbaijanis living in the city.
"There are at least 30,000 Azerbaijanis living in the city. We have made them a gift at the session. And not only to them, but to all our parents who loved Muslim Magomayev. He was a genius. Now there will be Muslim Magomayev Street in Dnipro," the mayor noted.
The opening ceremony was attended by artists from several countries, the culture ministers of Azerbaijan and Ukraine Abulfas Garayev and Yevhen Nyshchuk.
As part of the celebration of the 75th anniversary of the world-famous opera and pop singer, the Muslim Magomayev Square was solemnly opened in Kiev on the initiative of the Embassy of Azerbaijan in Ukraine, at the intersection of the Vyacheslav Chornovil Avenue and the Sich Riflemen Street. A monument to the outstanding artist was also erected.
Muslim Magomayev became famous around the USSR at the age of 19 after a stellar performance at the Kremlin Palace in Moscow. He became known in Europe after a successful performance at the Youth Festival in Helsinki, Finland.
A very important stage in mastering his vocals skills even further was his training in the La Scala Opera Theater in Milan. Muslim's stay in Italy – a country of innumerable art treasures and the home of belcanto – in the 1960s was not only beneficial for his singing, but also affected his inner world.
At age of 30, Magomayev was one of the youngest recipients of the highest artistic title, People's Artist of the USSR. He also received numerous awards for his contribution to opera and popular music in the Soviet Union.
The legendary singer also wrote songs, film soundtracks and music for theater performances. In addition, he played in films and acted as a host in television and radio broadcasts. He also loved to paint pictures, but called it his hobby.
In his later life, Magomayev struggled with a serious heart condition. In 1998, Magomayev officially ended his musical career and gave only a few performances together with his wife.
One of the greatest singers of the 20th century died of a heart failure in Moscow on October 25, 2008, and was laid to rest in Baku.
Laman Ismayilova is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow her on Twitter: @Lam_Ismayilova
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