Andrei Iakovlevich Eshpai

Eshpai, Andrei Iakovlevich


Born May 15, 1925, in Koz’modem’iansk. Soviet composer. People’s Artist of the USSR (1975).

Eshpai began his musical education under his father, the Mari composer and folklorist Iakov Andreevich Eshpai (1890–1963). In 1953 he graduated from the Moscow Conservatory, where he had studied composition under E. K. Golubev and piano under V. V. Sofronitskii. He pursued graduate work in composition at the conservatory with A. I. Khachaturian.

Eshpai’s finest works include the ballet Angara (1976, Bolshoi Theater) and the cantata Lenin Is With Us (1968). He has composed four symphonies (1959, 1962, 1965, and 1978), the Symphonic Dances on Mari Themes (1952), the Concerto for Orchestra (1967), piano concerti (1954 and 1972), violin concerti (1956 and 1977), and the Hungarian Melodies for Violin and Orchestra (1953). Other works include chamber music, variety-stage and popular songs, and music for motion pictures.

In 1973, Eshpai became first secretary of the administrative board of the Composers’ Union of the RSFSR. In 1976 he received the State Prize of the USSR. Eshpai has been awarded three orders and various medals.


[Daragan, D.] Andrei Eshpai. Moscow, 1960.
Bogdanova, A. Andrei Eshpai. Moscow, 1975.