80th birthday of Russian-British composer Vladislav Shoot

Russian-British composer Vladislav Shoot will celebrate his 80th birthday on 3 March 2021. Like many other composers of his generation, he studied composition with Nikolai Peiko at the renowned Gnessin Institute in Moscow. Afterwards, he initially took up an editorial position at the music magazine “Sovietsky Compositor”, but soon decided to try his luck as a freelance composer. Similar to Alfred Schnittke and other Russian composers of the post-Shostakovich era, Shoot also wrote a number of film scores. This genre offered a great opportunity to composers of the period interested in new avant-garde compositional techniques and styles. Not infrequently, they were subjected to performance bans and attacks and were compelled to bow to the ideas of Soviet cultural politicians. In 1990, the situation changed with the dissolution of the Soviet Union. At that time, Vladimir Shoot founded the Society for Contemporary Music ASM (Assozijazija sowremennoi musyki) together with Sofia Gubaidulina, Edison Denisov, Elena Firsova and her husband Dmitri Smirnov as well as Nikolai Korndorf. As with most of these composers, however, he left his Russian homeland in 1992 and went to Dartington Hall in Great Britain to become composer in residence.

In 1992 he accepted an offer to be Composer in Residence at Dartington Hall for three years and decided to stay in England. Shoot’s works are quite frequently experimental and usually developed from a basic, sonic idea. The composer prefers chamber music settings and also enjoys writing for smaller ensembles.   

He once said: “I love a music in which, besides all beauty and perfection, there is a kind of irrational door, a ‘black hole’, a place of chaos and sadness. The less this hole reveals of itself at times, the better, but there it must be.”

 

03.03.2021 

80th birthday

Vladislav Shoot 

(*03.03.1941) 

- “Ex animo” for orchestra

- “Romantic Messages” for bassoon, flute, piano and string orchestra

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