Listov, Konstantin


Konstantin Yakovlevich Listov - one of the first composers of the Soviet operetta and master of the song genre. Melodic brightness and lyrical innocence are combined with conciseness and simplicity of form in his compositions. The best works of the composer gained wide popularity.

Konstantin Listov was born on September 19, 1900 in Odessa; he graduated from music school in Tsaritsyn (now Volgograd). When the Civil war in full swing, he volunteered to the Red Army and was a non-rated soldier of the machine-gun regiment. In 1919-1922, he studied in Saratov Conservatory, after graduating he worked as a pianist, then as a theater conductor in Saratov and in Moscow.

In 1928, Listov wrote his first operetta, which did not take on. The Song about Tachanka, written to the verse by B. Ruderman brought wide fame to the composer in the 30’s. The song "In Zemlyanka" to the verse by A. Surkov was even more popular during the Great Patriot War.

During the war, the composer was a musical consultant in the Political Directorate of the USSR Navy and he visited all Navy bases in the country. The Navy theme was reflected the popular Listov’s songs, "We went in navy campaigns", "Sevastopol waltz", as well as in his operettas. After the war, the creative interests of the composer were mainly concentrated on the operetta theater.

Listov composed many operettas, “The Queen was mistaken” (1928), “Ice House” (1938, after the novel by Lazhechnikov), “Money-box” (1938, after by the comedy of Eugène Labiche), “Corallina” (1948), “The Dreamers” (1950), “Aira” (1951), “The Stalingrad citizens are Singing” (1955), “The Sevastopol Waltz” (1961), “The Heart of the Baltic Fleet Sailor” (1964).

The operetta “The Sevastopol Waltz” is the best and most popular musical comedy by K. Listov. The theme of the great Patriotic war attached the heroic and romantic color to it. Vital reliability of the characters and situations, a combination of pathetic and humor, melodic brightness of musical numbers made "The Sevastopol waltz" one of the best Soviet operettas.

In 1973, K. Listov was awarded with the title of the People's artist of the RSFSR.

Source: L. Mikheeva, A. Orelovich “In the world of operetta”. Leningrad. “Soviet Composer”. 1982