By Laman Ismayilova
Memory of Azerbaijan's prominent composer Gara Garayev has been honored in Baku.
Speaking at the event, Culture Minister Anar Karimov named Gara Garayev as one of the brightest representatives of the national composing school.
"Gara Garayev is a personality who left a very large mark on the Azerbaijani musical culture. For his creative work, the composer has created three symphonies, more than 20 symphonic works, over 50 chamber works, the cycle" 24 preludes for piano, two operas, two ballets. He also composed music for films and numerous theatrical performances in Baku, Moscow and Leningrad (now St. Petersburg). These works include the ballets "Seven Beauties" and "Trail of Thunder", "Leyli and Majnun" symphonic piece and much more, the Culture Minister said.
It was noted that Gara Garayev was one of Dmitry Shostakovich's favorite students. And today the creative legacy of the outstanding composer is a great school for the younger generation.
Gara Garayev's works are now aired on Mezzo channel, and delight fans of classical music.
The chairman of the Azerbaijan Composers' Union, People's Artist Frangiz Ali-Zade noted that Gara Garayev is known as an innovative composer.
"For more than 30 years now our outstanding composer has not been among us, but we are surrounded by his music every day. of this word," Ali-Zadee said.
The chairman of the Union of Composers of Azerbaijan stressed that Gara Garayev brought oriental charm to the western composer school, his music is rich in wonderful orchestral colors. The master opened up new ways of modern compositional technique.
The rector of the Baku Music Academy, People's Artist of the USSR Farhad Badalbayli noted that Gara Garayev's music sounds in the most prestigious concert halls.
The rector of the Azerbaijan National Conservatory, People's Artist Siyavush Karimi stressed Gara Garayev's contribution to the Azerbaijani musical culture.
Having synthesized Eastern and Western musical traditions, his works cover essentially all genres. The works by Gara Garayev are performed all over the world.
Garayev inherited his love of music from his parents. His father Abulfaz Garayev was a famous pediatrician in Baku. Abulfaz Garayev was known for his kindness and generosity. When patients were too poor to pay for treatment, he often left money under the prescription that he had written out for them.
He knew Azerbaijani folk music very well and loved to sing. Garayev's mother, Sona Khanim, was among the first graduates of the Music School, the Baku branch of the Russian Music Society.
At the age of eight, Garayev first entered the junior music school at the Azerbaijan State Conservatoire. His exceptional musical talents let him study simultaneously in two faculties at the conservatoire. His teachers were Georgi Sharoyev, Leonid Rudolf, and the prominent Azerbaijani composer Uzeyir Hajibeyli.
In 1938, Garayev composed his first musical piece, a cantata "The Song of the Heart" to the poem by Rasul Rza. It was performed in Moscow's Bolshoi Theater in the same year. He was only 20 years old at the time.
Garayev returned to Baku in 1941. He began teaching students at Azerbaijan State Philharmonic Society.
In 1945, both he and Jovdat Hajiyev wrote the "Motherland" opera, for which they were awarded a prestigious Stalin Prize. At the age of 30, Garayev was again awarded this prize for his symphonic poem "Leyli and Majnun", based on the same-titled famous work of Nizami Ganjavi.
In 1952, under the direction of the choreographer P. A. Gusev, Garayev's "Seven Beauties" ballet was staged at the Azerbaijani Theater of Opera and Ballet. Based on Nizami Ganjavi's famous poem, "Seven Beauties", it became the first Azerbaijani ballet and opened a new chapter in the history of classical music of Azerbaijan.
His ballet, "Path of Thunder", staged in 1958, was dedicated to racial conflicts in South Africa. In the same year, he wrote the score for the documentary film" A Story About the Oil Workers of the Caspian Sea", directed by Roman Karmen and set at the Oil Rocks.
Throughout his life, Garayev wrote nearly 110 musical pieces, including ballets, operas, symphonic and chamber pieces, solos for piano, cantatas, songs and marches, and rose to prominence not only in Azerbaijan, but also worldwide.
He brilliantly juxtaposed features of Mugham with jazz, blues, African music, European counterpoint styles, and developments related to 20th century Western music such as the 12-tone technique.
Garayev died on May 13, 1982 in Moscow at the age of 64. The memory of a great composer will always live in the hearts of Azerbaijani people.
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