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This coffee break begins our investigation of music composed under Russia's Soviet regime beginning with a piece by Kabalevsky, a simple, open composition which might be the Soviet ideal. We battle on the ice with Prokofiev's composition for Alexander Nevsky, the epic movie by Sergei Eisenstein--another piece vaunted by the Kremlin. But Prokofiev ran afoul of Premier Stalin with the sometimes dissonant, ethereal Cantata on the 20th Anniversary of the October Revolution. Shostakovitch, too, was chastised by Stalin for his opera Lady Macbeth, which lacked simplicity and was immoral, not up to Soviet standards, according to the Kremlin. After Stalin's death, Shostakovitch composed String Quartet No. 8 in C Minor, Op. 110 which memorialized the terror under the Stalin regime. Listen to the full piece here Contact the show at


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