Molchanov, Kirill


Boris Pasternak used to say, "The goal of creativity is dedication". Kirill Molchanov was the benchmark of such dedication. He was not only the singer of the war; he was a person of varied attainments and versatile talents.

Kirill Molchanov was born on September 7, 1922 in Moscow in the family of musicians.
His mother, Natalya Konstantinovna, was an opera singer. She took part in performances at the opera studios of the Bolshoi Theater and Stanislavsky and Nemirovich-Danchenko Music Theatre.

In 1937, Kirill participated as a pianist and composer in young talents art festival.

During the Great Patriotic War, Kirill Molchanov was at the fighting front, he served in the Red Army Song and Dance Ensemble of the Siberian Military Command.
Molchanov received his musical education at the Moscow Conservatory, where he studied composition under A. Alexandrov. In 1949, Molchanov graduated from the Conservatory, presenting the opera “The Stone Flower”, based on “The Ural Tales” by Pavel Bazhov – “The Malachite Box”, as a diploma examination. The opera premiered in 1950 at the stage of Stanislavsky and Nemirovich-Danchenko Moscow Music Theatre.

Kirill Molchanov was the author of eight operas: “The Stone Flower” (based on the tales by P. Bazhov, 1950), “The Dawn” (based on the play by B. Lavrenev “The Break”, 1956), “Street del Corno” (based on the novel by V. Pratolini, 1960) , “Romeo, Juliet and Darkness” (following the novel by Jan Otčenášek, 1963), “Stronger than Death” (1965), “An Unknown Soldier” (by S. Smirnov, 1967), “The Russian Woman” (based on the novel “Woman's World” by Yu. Nagibin “Women’s Tzardom”, 1970), “Dawns are quiet here” (the story by Boris Vasilyev, 1974); the musical “Odyssey, Penelope and Others” (the plot by Homer, 1970), three concerts for piano and orchestra (1945, 1947, 1953), romances, songs, music for theater and cinema.

The opera occupied the central place in Molchanov’s creative work; most of the composer's operas were devoted to the contemporary themes, including the events of the October Revolution (“The Dawn”) and the Great Patriotic War of 1941-1945 (“An Unknown Soldier”, “The Russian Woman”, “Dawns Here Are Quiet"). While writing his operas, Molchanov often used melodies that were intonationally associated with the Russian songs and ballades. He also acted as a librettist (“Romeo, Juliet and Darkness”, “An Unknown Soldier”, “The Russian Woman”, “Dawns Here Are Quiet”). Molchanov songs (“Here the Soldiers Go through the Scorched Steppe ...", "So many idle guys, and I love the married one...", Wait for me, and I'll come back! Wait with all you've got!...”) gained popularity.

Molchanov was the author of the ballet “Macbeth” (based on the play by W. Shakespeare, 1980) and the ballet “Three Cards” (based on the novel by A. Pushkin, 1983).
Molchanov paid much attention to composing theatrical music. He was the author of music for a number of performances in Moscow theaters: “The Voice of America”, “Admiral's Banner” and “Lycurgus’s Law” at the Central Theater of the Soviet Army “Griboedov” at the Konstantin Stanislavsky Drama Theater, “The 3rd Year Student” and “The Cunning Lover” in the Theater named after Moscow City Council and other performances.