07 April 2003, 12:55

Arakishvili (Araktchiev), Dimitry Ignatyevich

Composer, ethnic music scientist, journalist, public figure, National Artist (narodny artist) of Georgian SSR (Soviet Socialist Republic) (1929), academician of the Georgian SSR Academy of Sciences (1950). One of the first Georgian professional musicians.

Born February 11 (23), 1873, in Vladikavkaz. Graduated from Moscow Philharmonic College in 1901, improved his composing skills with A.T. Grechaninov. Starting 1897, published in Russian and Georgian media on music issues. Starting 1901, participated in the work of Music Ethnography Commission of Moscow University; was one of the founders of Moscow People's Conservatoire (1906). Recorded and published over (in Georgia) 500 samples of Georgian folk music. Author of first works in the field of Georgian music folklore studies (Essay on Development of Georgian Kartalino-Kakhetin Folk Song, Moscow, 1905, Folk Song of Western Georgia [Imeretia], Moscow, 1908, Georgian Folk Music Art, Moscow, 1916, and other).

Lived in Tbilisi since 1918. Was the initiator of organizing the Georgian Conservatoire, where he was a professor. Many prominent Georgian musicians were D.I. Arakishvili's students.

The appearance of a Georgian classical romance (on lyrics by Pushkin, Fet, Khetagurov, Khafiz, Kuchishvili, and other poets) is associated with D.I. Arakishvili's name. The best of the romances are based on the tunes of Georgian urban folklore.

D.I. Arakishvili is the author of the first Georgian opera, The Saga of Shota Rustaveli, performed in Tiflis in 1919, which lay the foundation to formation of Georgian music theater; he also authored three symphonies, choirs, and other compositions. USSR State Prize (1950). Awarded four orders and several medals.

D.I. Arakishvili died August 13, 1953, in Tbilisi.

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