The Odessa Section of the Imperial Russian Musical Society: Formation and Summation
The activities of the Odessa Section of the Imperial Russian Musical Society (IRMS) during the years 1884–1917
comprises a special page of the musical history of Odessa. Relying on anterior experience of the Odessa musical
traditions of the first half of the 19th century, during a short period of time the Odessa Section brought out the musical
life of the city onto a higher degree on all levels (the concert-enlightening and entertaining), which made it possible for
Odessa to take up a significant position not only in the social-cultural life, but also in the sphere of musical culture. As
the result of the active efforts of the Odessa Section of the IRMS and the Musical Classes opened under its auspices,
the Musical College was opened (1897) and, later, the Conservatory (1913), – the latter being the fourth in Russia and
the first in Ukraine. The altruistic help, enthusiasm and self-sacrifice of the Odessa cultural activists, aristocracy and
patrons, as well as the help of the metropolitan section of the IRMS and the most significant musicians of St. Petersburg
and Moscow (the brothers Anton and Nikolai Rubinstein, Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov, Piotr Tchaikovsky, Eduard
Napravnik, Alexander Glazunov and others) made it possible to create a highly professional level of the musical life
of the city. The traditions laid by the activities of the Odessa Section have been actively developed since that time (the
ten-year Piotr Stolyarsky School, the concert life of the Philharmonic Society and the Opera Theater, the “Two Days
and Two Nights of New Music” International Festival for Contemporary Music).
Keywords: The Odessa Section of the Imperial Russian Musical Society (IRMS), the Odessa Musical College, the
Odessa Conservatory, the Musical Classes, Piotr Sokalsky, Odessa patrons.
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