Gara Garayev – world-known Azerbaijani composer, whose music rooted in traditions of Azerbaijani folk

The world-known Azerbaijani composer, Gara Garayev left a deep imprint on the musical culture not only of Azerbaijan, but around the world.

His compositional art has received a wide recognition, both in Azerbaijan and far beyond its borders and gained a worldwide fame.

Garayev was a student of Shostakovich, who is regarded as one of the major composers of the 20th century and whose music is heavily indebted to the music of his native Azerbaijan.

Garayev’s impact on the Azerbaijani national symphonic, chamber-instrumental and vocal genres, film music, and the opera and ballet were tremendous.

His music rooted in the traditions of the Azerbaijani folk. The impact of studies of the folk music with the eminent Uzeyir Hajibayli, founder of the classical music of Azerbaijan is clear.

He wrote ballets, including Seven Beauties (1952) and The Path of Thunder (1957); an opera Motherland (co-authored with J. Hajiyev (1945); three symphonies (1943, 1946, 1964); a symphonic poem, Leyli and Majnun (1947); Albanian Rhapsody (1952); Don Quixote Symphonic Engravings (1960); 24 Preludes for Piano (1951-1963); a Violin Concerto (1967); incidental film music, Fires of Baku (1951), The Conqueror of the Sea (1965), and many other works.

Garayev’s symphony pieces constitute part of the repertoire of the world’s leading orchestras. After featuring in many countries, “Seven Beauties” was finally staged in 2014 in San Diego (California), for the first time in the United States.

Gara Garayev emerged as a groundbreaking twentieth-century modern composer, whose works appeared in many concert halls of the world, including countries of the former Soviet Union, Europe, and the United States.

Between 1949-1953, Garayev served as the Dean of the Azerbaijan State Conservatory and from 1965-1982, as the Chairman of the Union of Azerbaijan Composers, as well as Secretary of the Union of USSR Composers.

The distinct architecture of Garayev works, the beauty of his melodies, and the innovative harmonic and orchestral language of his music are striking.

Source: Azerbaijan State News Agency