Sound of the Dynasty: music written by Romanovs to be performed for the first time

  October 15, 2009 at 12:24 pm by

Music written by members of the Romanov dynasty is to be performed for the first time on October 20, during the concert that will take place in the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour in Moscow.

Prince Vladimir Paley

Among the pieces to be performed are polkas, songs, marches, ballads and romances written by Grand Duke Konstantin Konstantinovich and Grand Duchess Alexandra Iosifovna (wife of Grand Duke Konstantin Nikolayevich, second son of Nicholas I), as well music based on poetry written by Prince Vladimir Pavlovich Paley (the son of Grand Duke Paul Alexandrovich and his morganatic wife Olga Valerianovna Paley) and Prince Oleg Konstantinovich (the immensely talented 4th son of Grand Duke Konstantin Konstantinovich who died in battle during World War I, aged just 21). The magnificent music on Ukrainian themes composed by Alexander II will also be heard for the first time.

The audience will have a unique insight into the very soul of members Romanovs: they will see, or rather hear, not statesmen and historical figures but real people with their thoughts, feelings, worries and yearnings.

The Romanov dynasty gave birth to many people distinguished in various fields, including art. All Romanovs received excellent musical education, which resulted in beautiful and touching pieces that show the woes and joys of the times. Among the number of those extraordinary people, two names stand out – Grand Duke Konstantin Konstantinovich and Prince Vladimir Pavlovich Paley.

Grand Duke Konstantin Konstantinovich

Grand Duke Konstantin’s talent was wide-ranging: he was a talented poet and author of several volumes of poetry: many famous romances and ballads are based upon those. He was a gifted playwright and wrote the magnificent play “King of Judea”, which was later used by Bulgakov in his “Master and Margarita”. The Grand Duke was author of excellent Russian translations of Schiller, Goethe and Shakespeare. Konstantin Konstantinovich was also a talented and pianist who counted many of Russia’s famous composers, including Tchaikovsky, among his closest friends. Grand Duke Konstantin died in 1915 and was thus spared from the unbearable sufferings visited upon his family during the Revolution, including the death of three of his sons in Alapaevsk. He did see the death of his favourite 4th son, Prince Oleg, and of his son-in-law, Prince Constantine Bagration-Muhransky, who both died in battles during World War I.

Prince Vladimir Paley was arguably the most gifted member of the Romanov dynasty: his great talent shone through even when he was a small child. Aged only 19, he published his first of collection of poetry, called simply “Volumes”. All proceeds from the sale of the books went to Empress Alexandra’s charity foundations. The “Volumes” contained 86 poems written from 1913 to 1916 and dedicated to a whole range of topics – love, nature, mythology, music, art, theatre, family, friends, patriotism and war. The Prince’s work was very well-received by critics: some even called Vladimir one of the hopes of the contemporary Russian poetry. Prince Vladimir, who knew 7 languages, wrote a truly magnificent French translation of Grand Duke Konstantin Konstantinovich’s play “King of Judea”: when the Grand Duke, who was already gravely ill at the time, read the translation, he exclaimed: “Right before my death, I am fortunate to experience one of the most beautiful moments of my life, and I owe it to Vova!” Vladimir’s talent was not destined to give more fruits: he was brutally murdered by Bolsheviks in Alapaevsk, aged just 21, along with other Romanovs, which included 3 of Grand Duke Konstantin’s sons.

Filed under Historical Royals, Russian Royals
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4 Responses to Sound of the Dynasty: music written by Romanovs to be performed for the first time

  1. James Archer says:

    I was absolutely amazed with the story about Prince Vladimir Paley.
    You see my great grandfather was aparently close to the Royal family Tsar Nicolas 1 and Nicolas 11.
    I have still have some things passed down from Queen Victoria to great grand dad to this very day.
    Is there anyone that might be able to help me with some of the details of the Paley familly activities up to and after the assassination of Nicolas 11.

  2. My comment is I accept the road to be a monarchy in Russia.I accept the duty the honor royalty is Russia is never to give up the heir throne of Russia who ever says Russia does not deserve the King to come back back Why not Russia will be back to have a king queen in Russia.I Trevis Kristen Callawoy accept the road duty responsibility of King to come soon in Russia Prophecy.Praise Russia!

  3. Emmanuel Sant says:

    I am a follower of the Romanov history. I always felt sorry for Prince Vladimir Paley,the way he died and his last words before beeing thrown in the shaft by those savages or perhaps better brutes.

  4. Delia Douglas says:

    Can anyone help me, I am tracing my family history and my father, James Joseph Clark was a Royal Marine serving on HMS Marlborough in 1919. He was with the company of Marines who escorted those left alive of The Russian Imperial Royal Family from the Winter Palace? under heavy fire from the bolsheviks to HMS Marlborough I am told there is movie footage of them arriving at HMS Marlborough.

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