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Russian culture (writers and composers)

Typical Russian style is "Всё хорошо, но тучи сгущаются"


Alexander Pushkin, Nikolai Gogol, Nikolai Leskov, Ivan Goncharov, Ivan Turgenev, Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Leo Tolstoy, Anton Chekhov, Mikhail Bulgakov, Ilf and Petrov

There are many modern Russian writers now and literary critics say that a lot of them are talented but I have not read all of the classics yet


Pyotr Tchaikovsky http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wz_f9B4pPtg,

Alexander Borodin http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F0UTI-z0bHU,

Sergei Rachmaninoff http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4QB7ugJnHgs,

Dmitri Shostakovich http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LX1fiE0U1qA,

Sergei Prokofiev http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DUmq1cpcglQ,

Aram Khachaturian http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZNqMnfCxxC4,

Georgy Sviridov http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xm8kpZoX32k

Here are some examples of soviet soundtracks

Isaak Dunayevsky https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZEWBcmU77b4

Andrey Petrov https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PdQVQBjziAY

Eugen Doga https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0mSHQgpeCbQ

January 10, 2016



My favorite Russian novel is probably The Petty Demon by Fyodor Sologub. It's pretty obscure but so, so good. It's about these terrible people in a small town making each other miserable in hilarious ways.


Мелкий Бес! Yes, that is is good one, especially if you have to deal with jerks a lot.


The name actually rings a bell... thanks for the recommendation, I'll look it up.


that is nice, and definitive must read for all who learn rusian, however id like to ask for a sugestion of a book that could be read in russian by a beginer, i mean ive read толстой spanish (wich is my native language) version of war and peace and while it was a great book it was also an incredibly hard one (at least for me), i dont even want to imagine how hard it would be in russian if you dont master it yet, so, any sugestion of a book easy enough to be read in russian?


'In my opinion Russian composers don't write music having any value since 1991.'

Not arguing the point itself, as it does seem to be somewhat true. But I think no one will mind a couple exceptions. ;p

Vladimir Martynov - Заповеди Блаженства

Georgy Sviridov - Petersburg


And Victor Zakharchenko! He's written lots of good folk music. :-)


Nikolai Kapustin is one of the greatest composers still living. He is also performed regularly in concert halls nowadays.

For example: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mckFb-N70GU


Another great composer is Sofia Gubaidulina, born in 1931.


That is how it was at least 100 years ago ;-)

[deactivated user]

    There are lots of modern Russian books, but it's difficult to understand which modern writers will be famous in the future, and which will be forgotten, especially for laypeople like us who are not literary critics.

    One way to discover modern Russian writers is to look for literary prizes. Russian Wikipedia has a list of Russian literary prizes. Unfortunately, it's not a good place to start for beginners, since most of the information (and books too, if they're modern) are not translated into English.

    Another way would be to look at the circulation. According to the 2012 statistics (I doubt it's different in 2015), the most published authors are Darya Dontsova, Yulia Shilova and Aleksandra Marinina. They are constantly criticised as being repeatative, boring, or having little value, but they are still the most popular books around here. I don't know if they can be recommended to anyone, but they do deserve a mention. :)

    One more way to discover new books is to read book reviews. For example, Meduza.io has a column by Galina Yuzefovich (her column can be found by clicking on the search button with a magnifying glass and typing Галина Юзефович). If you like fantasy and science fiction, the magazine «Мир фантастики» has a section with book reviews.


    If consider citations as a factor of importance in the modern culture, then the leaders would be Pelevin or Lukyanenko (science fiction/fantasy). In my opinion. It's about the contemporary writers. Also Strugatsky brothers and Efremov from the earlier times, also science fiction.


    B. Akunin (whose real name is Grigori Chkhartishvili) has excellent historical thrillers with his detective Erast Fandorin. There are other series as well, as the one with Sister Pelagia.


    That is what I read and listen to now)


    Fair enough, it's a good choice though


    At least one important Russian composer is missing in the list : Igor Stravinsky.


    We're talking about good composers here :-p But Modest Mussorgsky and Nikolay Rimsky-Korsakov are also absent.


    Обожаю Муссоргского.


    И я тоже!


    And also Ippolitov-Ivanov. Listen to this and then try and claim he wasn't a good composer. :-)


    Ah yes, I forgot that. Though having one or two good compositions is not the same as being a good composer (witness Debussy).


    Debussy wasn't that bad. He just wasn't always that good. And he did have several good pieces.


    Was Debussy Russian???


    No, he was French. :-)


    Stravinsky lived in imigration most of his life . "The Rite of Spring" was written in Russia though


    However, you can find tons of citations of Russian music in his works, for instance, listen to Петрушка. So Stravinsky is fine if you want to get acquainted with Russian music.


    Петрушка was written in Russia too


    Ah, yes, then right after moving to America Stravinsky had begun to write jazz and country music.))

    [deactivated user]

      My favorite Russian composer is Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov. I particularly love Scheherazade.


      I think Альфре́д Га́рриевич Шни́тке (1934-98) was another important Russian composer.


      Eugen Doga Has never been Russian. He is From Republic of Moldova.


      But he was Soviet ;)


      I'm learning Russian to try to read some of the Science Fiction/Fantasy writers who are not in translation. Is anyone else here interested in writers like Lukyanenko, Dmitri Emets, or Nik Perumov?

      Learn Russian in just 5 minutes a day. For free.