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Russian composer Sergei Slonimsky died in St. Petersburg at the age of 87

Sergei Slonimsky, a composer, pianist and musicologist born in Leningrad in 1932, died in St. Petersburg on February 9, 2020 at the age of 87. Slonimsky wrote eight operas, 34 symphonies and a large number of chamber music works. He used dodecaphony as well as style elements of jazz, neo-romantic approaches and folk music.
One of his most famous pieces is the chamber opera "Meister und Margarita" based on a theme by Mikhail Bulgakov.
Slonimsky adapted the famous subject of Bulgakov's "Meister und Margarita" in the early 1970s for a chamber opera for a small orchestra, seventeen voices and mixed choir (from the tape). Bulgakov's satirical-grotesque novel from 1928 to 1940 was so successful because many oppressed people in Stalinist Russia understood it as a call for inner and outer freedom. At the EXPO 2000 in Hanover and at the Rostock Volkstheater in the 2000/2001 season, the conductor Michail Jurowski provided the German-language premiere of this opera, which had long been ostracized in Russia, in the congenial German adaptation of the translating couple Peter and Ludmilla Steinacker.
At the center of the action is a young writer who has forgotten his name and therefore calls himself only "master". However, Meister remembers very well the past years, in which he wrote a novel about the Roman procurator Pontius Pilatus, but which was never published in full. His former mistress Margarita is an unhappily married woman who falls into the trap of the devil disguised as "Voland" and wishes to be able to live with Master, who has since been admitted to a psychiatric clinic. In the course of the novel, the plot lines of the fictional novel about "Pontius Pilatus" become more and more interwoven with the personal fates of Meister and Margarita.

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