Viacheslav Karatygin

Karatygin, Viacheslav Gavrilovich


Born Sept. 5 (17), 1875, in Pavlovsk; died Oct. 23, 1925, in Leningrad. Soviet music critic and composer.

Karatygin graduated from the natural sciences section of the department of physics and mathematics at the University of St. Petersburg in 1898 and worked as a chemist in a pyroxylin plant until 1907. He published several works on agricultural subjects. He studied the theory of music and composition with N. A. Sokolov. In 1906 he began writing music criticism. In 1919, Karatygin became a professor and full member of the Institute of Art History in Petrograd and was an active participant in the development of Soviet musical culture in the first few years after the October Revolution.

Karatygin was an outstanding representative of Russian music criticism of the early 20th century and a champion of the new musical currents of the time (the work of Scriabin, Prokofiev, Debussy, and Ravel). He wrote works on Mussorgsky, Balaki-rev, and Rimsky-Korsakov. However, Karatygin’s views were aesthetically limited in some ways, which resulted in his lack of understanding of some prominent elements in Russian music (especially the work of Tchaikovsky and Rachmaninoff). Karatygin was one of the organizers of the Evenings of Modern Music.


Zhizn’, deiatel’nos’: Stat’i i materialy [vol. 1]. Leningrad, 1927. Izbr’ staVi. Introduction by lu. A. Kremlev. Moscow-Leningrad, 1965.


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