Bitter Jazz History in Russia

The first Russian jazz concert was staged in Moscow in 1922 by Valentin Parnakh’s Jazz Band. Soon this band was given an opportunity to perform onstage during a musical show directed by Vsevolod Meierhold. Benny Peyton’s New Orleans vogue jazz band and also the initial US touring jazz, like the band of Sam Wooding’s The Chocolate Kiddies, they toured and played some concerts around Moscow and Leningrad (the renamed St Petersburg) in 1926.

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Valentin Parnakh’s Jazz Band

These bands impressed the formation of native bands in Russia and also the Ukraine, notably the primary Concert Jazz Band of Leningrad pianist Leopold Teplisky, who had gained official support to go to the us to listen to jazz and collect scores.

After a amount of official disapproval swing bands emerged within the cities, typically taking part in at restaurants. The fox trot caught on within the late Twenties, as did the Charleston or tango. Factories provided free fox trot lessons for his or her staff. A Leningrad-based jazz orchestra led by classically trained Yakov Skoromovsky appeared in Soviet films, and a number of other bands recorded for the state record company.

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Leonid Utesov

In 1939, a politician guide to the organization of song and dance and jazz orchestras was printed. In Moscow, jazz bands played between shows at movie theaters. the highest Soviet jazz musicians of the Thirties were Leonid Utesov and Alexander Tsafsman. whereas Utesov custom-made foreign influences to national tastes and designs, Tsafsman adopted those influences to form a cosmopolitan, Westernized music (Starr 1990, 132). In 1937, several of Tsafsman’s band were transferred to the newly-formed State Jazz Orchestra of the USSR .

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Eddie Rosner

During World War II, Soviet jazz benefited from the alliance with the US. several jazz scores were sent to the USSR from the US and also the swing musician Eddie Rosner, a German-born refugee from Poland, created the Belarus state jazz orchestra the foremost admired within the country. However, during the era of Cold war, performing or publishing jazz music was prohibited. The Moscow authorities In 1949, confiscated musical instruments like saxophones and lots of musicians were arrested and sent to the gulags.



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