Obituary: Russian conductor Gennady Rozhdestvensky, 87

Posted on: June 18, 2018

“The Russian conductor Gennady Rozhdestvensky, who championed an eclectic array of music, including works by Alfred Schnittke and Sofia Gubaidulina at a time when the Soviet establishment frowned on those composers, died on Saturday. He was 87,” writes Vivien Schweitzer in Monday’s (6/18) New York Times. “At the height of the Cold War, Mr. Rozhdestvensky was one of the elite Soviet artists permitted to tour abroad. In 1962 at the Edinburgh Festival he conducted the first performances in the West of Shostakovich’s Symphonies No. 4 and No. 12, with the composer in the audience…. He was also one of the most prominent conductors in Russia.… Yet he struggled within the confines of the Soviet system…. Gennady Nikolayevich Anosov was born on May 4, 1931…. His father, Nikolai Anosov, was a conductor and professor at the Moscow Conservatory and his mother, Natalya Rozhdestvenskaya, was a soprano…. He made his debut as a conductor leading the Bolshoi Theater Orchestra in Tchaikovsky’s ‘Sleeping Beauty’ while still a student, inaugurating a long association with the Bolshoi.” Rozhdestvensky was the subject of a 2008 documentary by Bruno Monsaingeon. He is survived by his wife, pianist Viktoria Postnikova, and son, violinist Sasha Rozhdestvensky.

Posted June 18, 2018