Issay Alexandrovich Dobrowen
(27 February 1891 – 9 December 1953)
He was born Itschok Zorachovitch Barabeitchik in Nizhny Novgorod, Russian Empire of Jewish parents. He left the Soviet Union in 1922, and became a Norwegian citizen in 1929. He once played Beethoven's Sonata Appassionata to Vladimir Lenin, whose favorite piece of music this was. Dobrowen directed the first German performance of Mussorgsky's Boris Godunov (Dresden, 1922). Dobrowen went on to conduct the Oslo Philharmonic orchestra (1928-31), at the Sofia Opera (1927-28), and the San Francisco Symphony (1931-34) and the Gothenburg Symphony (1941-53) orchestras. Dobrowen worked with both Nikolai Medtner and Artur Schnabel, among other well known musicians. He was also a close friend of the Russian writer Maxim Gorky, and the Norwegian explorer Fridtjof Nansen. He conducted his last concert with the Oslo Philharmonic in December 1952. His last concert was held on 19 January 1953, when he conducted the Stuttgart Orchestra. He died 9 December 1953 in Oslo at the age of 62. Relatively unknown today, he wrote very beautiful piano music, reminiscent of Sergei Rachmaninoff. Interest in Dobrowen as a composer has started to increase, thanks to a small number of new recording projects, involving the editing and collation of orchestral parts for his Piano Concerto in C sharp minor (Op. 20), which he himself played in a number of countries. As well as the concerto, of which the style and colourful orchestration ingeniously recall Medtner, Rachmaninoff and Alexander Scriabin, adding his own vein of attractive melancholy, three of the piano sonatas and a violin sonata have also appeared on disc in recent times.
Ludwig van Beethoven
Symphony no 5 in C minor, Op. 67
Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Symphony no 6 in B minor, Op. 74
Radio-Sinfonieorchester Stuttgart des SWR
19 January 1953 (Live)
Записи из личной коллекции.