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Alexander Alexeev (conductor)
Alexander Alexeev in rehearsal in 1963
Alexander Vasilievich Alexeev
(1938-03-10)10 March 1938
Belkovo, Novgorod Oblast, Russia
|Died||7 October 2020(2020-10-07) (aged 82)
Alexander Vasilievich Alexeev (Russian: Александр Васильевич Алексеев, tr. Aleksandr Vasil'yevich Alekseyev) (10 March 1938 – 7 October 2020) was a Soviet and Russian conductor and academic teacher, who received the Honored Artist of the RSFSR award. He was head of the department of opera and symphony conducting at the Saint Petersburg Conservatory between 2000 and 2008.
Life and career
Alexeev was born in Belkovo (Novgorod Oblast), Russia. From 1957 to 1966 he studied choral and symphonic conducting with Konstantin Olchov and Edouard Grikurov) at the Leningrad Conservatory. He was selected by cultural authorities in Moscow and Leningrad, as one of very few Russian conductors like Mariss Jansons, for postgraduate studies with Hans Swarowsky at the Vienna Music Academy from 1971.
He held first positions as conductor at the Ulyanovsk State Symphony Orchestra, the Leningrad State Academic Maly Opera Theatre (today Mikhailovsky Theatre), as well as the Chelyabinsk State Academic Opera and Ballet Theatre, before becoming Music Director of the Ulyanovsk State Symphony Orchestra. In 1978, Alexeev was awarded the honorary title of Honored Artist of the RSFSR.
Alexeev worked at the Bolshoi Theatre in Moscow from 1982 to 1984. He was offered a post with the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra in Helsinki, but as he never joined the communist party, had to stay in the Soviet Union where he worked until 1992 as music director of the Kharkov Philharmonic Orchestra, with whom he won in 1986 the orchestra competition amongst Soviet Republics. Alexeev recorded with different orchestras in Russia for the label Melodya, including the Moscow Radio Symphony Orchestra, as well performed regularly with leading musicians of the Soviet Union such as Gidon Kremer, Oleg Kagan, Vadim Repin, Yuri Bashmet, David Geringas, Natalia Gutman, Dmitri Alexeev, Mikhail Pletnev, Grigory Sokolov, and Dmitri Bashkirov. Among numerous productions in Leningrad, he conducted in 1966 Shostakovich's Katerina Ismailova (Lady Macbeth of the Mtsensk District) at the Leningrad State Academic Maly Opera Theatre with Larisa Avdeyeva in the title role and the composer involved in the rehearsals. He recorded Anton Arensky's Piano Concerto in F minor, Op. 2, with pianist Aleksei Cherkasov and the USSR Radio Symphony Orchestra in 1987, published with other works by Arensky. It was one of two Soviet recordings at the time.
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