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Strelnikov von Mensenkampf, Nikolay Mikhailovich (1888-1939)

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« on: August 31, 2021, 02:57:08 pm »

Here's an obscure Russian composer whose work(s) have been recorded:

Strelnikov von Mensenkampf, Nikolay Mikhailovich (1888-1939)Стрельников,_Николай_Михайлович

He wrote an operetta called The Servant ("Kholopka") which seems to have some enduring popularity (Холопка_(оперетта)). Some recordings as follows:

Nikolai Mikhailovich von Mensenkampf ( 1888  - 1939 ) - Russian and Soviet composer , music critic , conductor . Honored Artist of the RSFSR ( 1939 ). One of the founders of the Soviet operetta . The most famous of his works is the operetta The Servant ( 1929 ).

In musical, including composing, activities, in particular, for his musical works, he used his mother's maiden name, Strelnikov, as a pseudonym .

Nikolai von Menzenkampf was born in St. Petersburg into the family of a member of the St. Petersburg District Court for the city of Kronstadt, State Councilor Mikhail Gotgardovich von Menzenkampf (1853-1904) [1] and his wife Anna Petrovna Strelnikova, pianist, student of Anton Rubinstein . He belonged to the noble family of von Menzenkampf (in some sources the surname is erroneously indicated as Menzenkampf or Mesenkampf [2] ), the grandson of Lieutenant General GB von Menzenkampf . Rachmaninoff's second cousin (their grandmothers, Sofya Aleksandrovna Butakova and Elizaveta Aleksandrovna Menzenkampf, nee Litvinovs, were sisters[3] ). He was left without a mother early.

A prominent Russian lawyer, in 1909 he graduated from the Imperial School of Jurisprudence with a gold medal. Before the revolution, he had an extensive legal practice in the field of "injury law" - social security for persons who received work injuries. He became close to Senator AF Koni , together with whom he promoted the need for liberal reforms in Russian legislation [4] .

At the same time he studied musical composition with S. V. Rachmaninov , C. A. Cui , studied piano with A. N. Esipova . The elder second cousin, already a famous musician, was close to Nikolai Mikhailovich, “when he came to St. Petersburg, he constantly visited his house, strongly supported his early composing experiments, which was essential when deciding whether he should be a lawyer or choose a musical composer " [5] . The first independent experiments in composition are dated 1906.

In 1911, Nikolai von Menzenkampf entered the St. Petersburg Conservatory in the composition class of A.K. Lyadov . Published musical criticism articles in St. Petersburg and Moscow newspapers and magazines.

His legal career developed just as well. In 1915, court counselor Nikolai Mikhailovich von Menzenkampf served in the Ministry of Justice - secretary of the Fifth Civil Department of the Judicial Chamber of the Petrograd District Court [6] . Awarded the Order of St. Stanislav , at the suggestion of the school, was invited as a tutor to the imperial family. Despite this, he became close with prominent Bolsheviks - N. N. Krestinsky and P. I. Stuchka .

After the October Revolution, Stuchka and A. V. Lunacharsky was appointed head of the information and legal department of the People's Commissariat for Education and head of the music department of the Petrograd newspaper Life of Art (1918-1928). Also, after the revolution, he conducted a great educational work in workers' clubs and military units as a lecturer [7] .

In 1919 he became the head of the musical part of the Theater of the Political Department of the Seventh Army. Conducted musical, educational and concert activities in workers' clubs, in the army and navy. In 1922-1923 he published 3 books with biographies of famous musicians. At the same time, as a prominent specialist in labor law, he was elected chairman of the Special Branch of the Petrograd People's Court.

Since 1922, N.M. Menzenkampf ceased his legal activity and until the end of his life worked as the head of the musical department and conductor at the Leningrad Youth Theater .

In 1927, the first operetta of the composer "Nikolai Strelnikov" appeared - "Black Amulet".

In 1929, N. Strelnikov's best operetta, "The Servant" , was written . The libretto was originally written for use in a play to the music of Kalman's " Circus Princess " , but this production was not carried out, and Strelnikov was asked to write new music on this plot.

In 1935, the composer was arrested by the NKVD. He was saved by the composer Yu. A. Shaporin , who turned to Stalin, and Strelnikov was released [8] .

He died on April 12, 1939 in Moscow from tuberculosis. His grave is located in St. Petersburg at Literatorskie mostki Volkov cemetery .

Nikolai Mikhailovich wrote music for theatrical performances, romances, various instrumental and vocal works, music for films, operetta and opera.

Servant  - operetta by Nikolai Strelnikov , libretto by V. Rappoport and E. Gerken . The premiere took place on March 8, 1929 in Leningrad. "Servant", as the "Theatrical Encyclopedia" pointed out, "laid the foundation for the genre of the Soviet historical and everyday operetta" and was preserved in the later repertoire of the Soviet era "thanks to a fascinating plot and talented music, permeated with intonations of Russian songs and everyday romance"

History of creation
The idea of the operetta arose in the course of attempts to remake I. Kalman 's operetta " Princess of the Circus " (1926) in the Russian way.

One of the old Leningrad operetta artists kept a curious document - the clavier of the "Princess of the Circus", on which the work was going on. The title page contains the title options for the new play: "Servant", "Princess Servant", "Radiant Servant"; on top of the German singing texts, a Russian poetic translation and a new text in the style of the 18th century are inscribed. The play and the music did not come together - in fact, this was to be expected. We decided to write new music too. It was composed by the Soviet composer Nikolai Mikhailovich Strelnikov. This is how the Soviet historical operetta "Servant" appeared ... [3]

The famous opera singer Madeleine LeBlanc, who is very popular in Paris, is expected to arrive at the estate of Count Kutaisov. Guests come to the celebrations, including Prince Nikita Baturin. Andrei Tumansky, a former serf actor and half-brother of Prince Nikita Baturin, returns from Paris. Andrey goes to the count to see his brother. Father Nikita and Andrey, dying, left debts, and the count bought out the Baturins' estate. Arriving at the holiday, Andrei recognizes his beloved in the opera diva - the serf actress Arina Vishnyakova.

The Servant was the first production of the Musical Comedy Theater , which opened in 1929 in Leningrad, and was resumed on its stage in 1940, 1952 and 2009. In 1932 and 1945. staged by the Moscow Operetta Theater , the performance was also staged in Tashkent (1940), Ufa (1945), Voronezh (1950), Gorky (1959), Ulan-Ude (1960), Dushanbe (1960), Kharkov (1964) and other cities THE USSR.

Grigory Yaron became famous in the role of Count Kutaisov .

Based on the operetta " Serf ", the film "The Serf Actress " was filmed .
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« Reply #1 on: September 01, 2021, 04:07:01 pm »

Um...not sure why he would be?
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« Reply #2 on: September 01, 2021, 05:03:45 pm »

Sorry, I mis-read the surname.
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