Romance "The Nightingale" by A. Alyabyev for the 235th birth jubilee of the composer
Alexander Alyabyev is a Russian composer, one of the founders of the national lyric romance, chamber instrumental music, a harbinger of the Russian composing school achievements. In the 19th century he enjoyed great success, wrote about 200 romances, 6 operas, 20 musical comedies, and many other musical works.
On Alyabyev birth jubilee, the museum Sound Library is enriched with the romance "The Nightingale", written by the composer to the verses of the poet Anton Delvig. The song was digitized from the gramophone record stored in Museum Collection repository, produced at the Noginsk plant of gramophone records "Gramplasttrest". USSR, Noginsk. NARKOMMASH.
Until now, "Nightingale" remains one of the most popular Russian romances, having long been included in the classics of all Russian culture. Such popularity was forwarded by the amazing expressiveness and soulful innocence of the music. The romance remained popular for almost two centuries. It sounded on the radio, TV screens and was recorded for audio collections.
Despite the popularity of this romance, the history of its creation, as well as the history of the composer’s life are full of unclear facts; the information is treated by various sources in different ways. The romance was composed in the style of Russian folk songs - both the lyrics and music. The poem by Anton Delvig was published in “The collection of verses” by Baron Delvig”, St. Petersburg. 1829 under the title “Russian Song. The music was composed between May 1825 and February 1826. Moreover, on January 7, 1827, the romance sounded from the Bolshoi Theater stage in Moscow.
The plot of the romance is unelaborate - it is about the sorrowful woeful fate of women; the text is composed as an appeal to a nightingale. However, deep sorrow and despair lies behind the deceptively simple form. This refers not only to disappointment in love. Alyabyev saw in this poem a farewell to a close friend, when a long separation is ahead and it is unknown whether you will see him again. Alyabyev composed music for these poems being incarcerated. On February 24, 1825, Alyabyev was arrested on false charges of murder: during a card game organized at a dinner party at his home, he hit the retired colonel T.M. Vremev for card cheating, a few days later the colonel, who had been seriously ill for a long time, died suddenly, and Alyabyev was accused of murder. He ended up in prison, then in exile, cut off from his usual way of life and environment. The image of a nightingale was perceived as a symbol of those invisible bonds that tied the forcibly separated - whether in love, close friends, or relatives - it does not matter. This is separation from those who are dear, from the pattern of life that was familiar and dear. According to some sources, the composer dedicated this romance to his beloved Ekaterina Rimskaya-Korsakova, whom he fell in love with at first sight at the New Year's dancing party.