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Andrey Voznesensky

Andrey Voznesensky

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Andrei Andreyevich Voznesensky was a Soviet
Soviet Union
The Soviet Union , officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics , was a constitutionally socialist state that existed in Eurasia between 1922 and 1991....

 and Russia
Russia
Russia or , officially known as both Russia and the Russian Federation , is a country in northern Eurasia. It is a federal semi-presidential republic, comprising 83 federal subjects...

n poet and writer who had been referred to by Robert Lowell
Robert Lowell
Robert Traill Spence Lowell IV was an American poet, considered the founder of the confessional poetry movement. He was appointed the sixth Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress where he served from 1947 until 1948...

 as "one of the greatest living poets in any language." He was one of the "Children of the '60s," a new wave of iconic Russian intellectuals led by the Khrushchev Thaw
Khrushchev Thaw
The Khrushchev Thaw refers to the period from the mid 1950s to the early 1960s, when repression and censorship in the Soviet Union were partially reversed and millions of Soviet political prisoners were released from Gulag labor camps, due to Nikita Khrushchev's policies of de-Stalinization and...

.

Voznesensky was considered "one of the most daring writers of the Soviet era" but his style often led to regular criticism from his contemporaries and he was once threatened with expulsion by Nikita Khrushchev
Nikita Khrushchev
Nikita Sergeyevich Khrushchev led the Soviet Union during part of the Cold War. He served as First Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union from 1953 to 1964, and as Chairman of the Council of Ministers, or Premier, from 1958 to 1964...

. He performed poetry readings in front of sold-out stadiums around the world, and was much admired for his skilled delivery. Some of his poetry was translated into English by W. H. Auden
W. H. Auden
Wystan Hugh Auden , who published as W. H. Auden, was an Anglo-American poet,The first definition of "Anglo-American" in the OED is: "Of, belonging to, or involving both England and America." See also the definition "English in origin or birth, American by settlement or citizenship" in See also...

. Voznesenky's long-serving mentor and muse was Boris Pasternak
Boris Pasternak
Boris Leonidovich Pasternak was a Russian language poet, novelist, and literary translator. In his native Russia, Pasternak's anthology My Sister Life, is one of the most influential collections ever published in the Russian language...

, the Nobel Laureate
Nobel Prize in Literature
Since 1901, the Nobel Prize in Literature has been awarded annually to an author from any country who has, in the words from the will of Alfred Nobel, produced "in the field of literature the most outstanding work in an ideal direction"...

 and the author of Doctor Zhivago
Doctor Zhivago
-Original creation:*Doctor Zhivago, by Boris Pasternak, published in 1957**Yuri Andreyevich Zhivago, a fictional character and the main protagonist of the book Doctor Zhivago-Adaptations:There are several adaptations based on the Doctor Zhivago book:...

.

Before his death, he was both critically and popularly proclaimed "a living classic", and "an icon of Soviet intellectuals".

Personal life


Voznesensky was born in Moscow
Moscow
Moscow is the capital, the most populous city, and the most populous federal subject of Russia. The city is a major political, economic, cultural, scientific, religious, financial, educational, and transportation centre of Russia and the continent...

. His father was a professor of engineering, while his mother influenced him early on by reading poetry in his presence. His father worked during World War II. In his early life, Voznesensky was fascinated with painting
Painting
Painting is the practice of applying paint, pigment, color or other medium to a surface . The application of the medium is commonly applied to the base with a brush but other objects can be used. In art, the term painting describes both the act and the result of the action. However, painting is...

 and architecture
Architecture
Architecture is both the process and product of planning, designing and construction. Architectural works, in the material form of buildings, are often perceived as cultural and political symbols and as works of art...

, in 1957 graduating from the Moscow Architectural Institute with a degree in engineering. His enthusiasm for poetry
Poetry
Poetry is a form of literary art in which language is used for its aesthetic and evocative qualities in addition to, or in lieu of, its apparent meaning...

, though, proved to be stronger. While still a teenager, he sent his poems to Boris Pasternak
Boris Pasternak
Boris Leonidovich Pasternak was a Russian language poet, novelist, and literary translator. In his native Russia, Pasternak's anthology My Sister Life, is one of the most influential collections ever published in the Russian language...

; the friendship between the two had a strong influence on the young poet, and he later described this relationship in "I Am Fourteen" – "From that day on, my life took on a magical meaning and a sense of destiny; his new poetry, telephone conversations, Sunday chats at his house from 2 to 4, walks—years of happiness and childish adoration". Pasternak, who died in 1960, paid him the ultimate tribute – "Your entrance into literature was swift and turbulent. I am glad I've lived to see it".

In later years Voznesensky became reclusive in nature. He suffered a stroke several years before his death. He is believed to have endured another stroke in early 2010.

On June 1, 2010, Voznesensky died at the age of 77. The secretary of Russian Union of Writers, Gennady Ivanov, announced that he had died in his home in a peaceful manner. A cause of death went unprovided. Russian President Dmitry Medvedev
Dmitry Medvedev
Dmitry Anatolyevich Medvedev is the third President of the Russian Federation.Born to a family of academics, Medvedev graduated from the Law Department of Leningrad State University in 1987. He defended his dissertation in 1990 and worked as a docent at his alma mater, now renamed to Saint...

 wrote a letter of condolences. A telegram by Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin
Vladimir Putin
Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin served as the second President of the Russian Federation and is the current Prime Minister of Russia, as well as chairman of United Russia and Chairman of the Council of Ministers of the Union of Russia and Belarus. He became acting President on 31 December 1999, when...

 said Voznesensky had "truly become a person of dominant influence". Other senior Russian officials and cultural entities also offered many tributes.

Voznesensky's wife, Zoya Boguslavskaya, outlived him. He was buried in the Moscow
Moscow
Moscow is the capital, the most populous city, and the most populous federal subject of Russia. The city is a major political, economic, cultural, scientific, religious, financial, educational, and transportation centre of Russia and the continent...

 Novodevichi Cemetery on 4 June 2010.

Career



Voznesensky's style was considered different from his contemporaries in the Soviet Union.

His first poems were published in 1958, and these immediately reflected his unique style. His lyrics are characterized by his tendency "to measure" the contemporary person by modern categories and images, by the eccentricity of metaphor
Metaphor
A metaphor is a literary figure of speech that uses an image, story or tangible thing to represent a less tangible thing or some intangible quality or idea; e.g., "Her eyes were glistening jewels." Metaphor may also be used for any rhetorical figures of speech that achieve their effects via...

s, by the complex rhythmical system and sound effects. Vladimir Mayakovsky
Vladimir Mayakovsky
Vladimir Vladimirovich Mayakovsky was a Russian and Soviet poet and playwright, among the foremost representatives of early-20th century Russian Futurism.- Early life :...

 and Pablo Neruda
Pablo Neruda
Pablo Neruda was the pen name and, later, legal name of the Chilean poet, diplomat and politician Neftalí Ricardo Reyes Basoalto. He chose his pen name after Czech poet Jan Neruda....

 have been cited among the poets who influenced him most.

The Goya-inspired "I Am Goya" was an early Voznesensky effort, and went on to achieve considerable recognition for its impressions of the fear and horror attached to war, as demonstrated by its Russian metaphors and recurring "g" sounds. Another early poem, "Fire in the Architecture Institute", was inspired by a 1957 night fire at the Institute of Architecture in Moscow. Voznesensky later said: "I believe in symbols. I understood that architecture was burned out in me. I became a poet".

Voznesensky was one of several young Russian intellectuals whom Nikita Khrushchev
Nikita Khrushchev
Nikita Sergeyevich Khrushchev led the Soviet Union during part of the Cold War. He served as First Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union from 1953 to 1964, and as Chairman of the Council of Ministers, or Premier, from 1958 to 1964...

 invited to a reception hosted by the ruling Communist Party in December 1962. Khrushchev scathingly remarked on Voznesensky at the ceremony: "Just look at this new Pasternak! You want to get a [foreign] passport tomorrow? You want it? And then go away, go to the dogs! Go, go there". In 1963, his fame blossomed and he became "as popular as The Beatles
The Beatles
The Beatles were an English rock band, active throughout the 1960s and one of the most commercially successful and critically acclaimed acts in the history of popular music. Formed in Liverpool, by 1962 the group consisted of John Lennon , Paul McCartney , George Harrison and Ringo Starr...

" after Khruschev publicly and falsely branded him a pervert.

In the 1960s, during the so-called Thaw
Khrushchev Thaw
The Khrushchev Thaw refers to the period from the mid 1950s to the early 1960s, when repression and censorship in the Soviet Union were partially reversed and millions of Soviet political prisoners were released from Gulag labor camps, due to Nikita Khrushchev's policies of de-Stalinization and...

, Voznesensky frequently travelled abroad: to France, Germany, Italy, the United States and other countries. The popularity of Voznesensky, Yevgeny Yevtushenko
Yevgeny Yevtushenko
Yevgeny Aleksandrovich Yevtushenko is a Soviet and Russian poet. He is also a novelist, essayist, dramatist, screenwriter, actor, editor, and a director of several films.-Early life:...

 and Bella Akhmadulina was marked by their performances in front of the adoring crowds numbering in the thousands at stadium
Stadium
A modern stadium is a place or venue for outdoor sports, concerts, or other events and consists of a field or stage either partly or completely surrounded by a structure designed to allow spectators to stand or sit and view the event.)Pausanias noted that for about half a century the only event...

s, in concert halls and universities
University
A university is an institution of higher education and research, which grants academic degrees in a variety of subjects. A university is an organisation that provides both undergraduate education and postgraduate education...

. In doing so, he served as "a sort of unofficial Kremlin cultural envoy", according to The New York Times
The New York Times
The New York Times is an American daily newspaper founded and continuously published in New York City since 1851. The New York Times has won 106 Pulitzer Prizes, the most of any news organization...

. His poetry reading skills were profound. He competed with Laurence Olivier
Laurence Olivier
Laurence Kerr Olivier, Baron Olivier, OM was an English actor, director, and producer. He was one of the most famous and revered actors of the 20th century. He married three times, to fellow actors Jill Esmond, Vivien Leigh, and Joan Plowright...

 and Paul Scofield
Paul Scofield
David Paul Scofield, CH, CBE , better known as Paul Scofield, was an English actor of stage and screen...

 at one show in London
London
London is the capital city of :England and the :United Kingdom, the largest metropolitan area in the United Kingdom, and the largest urban zone in the European Union by most measures. Located on the River Thames, London has been a major settlement for two millennia, its history going back to its...

. He criticised the 1968 invasion of Czechoslovakia. While in the United States, he met Allen Ginsberg
Allen Ginsberg
Irwin Allen Ginsberg was an American poet and one of the leading figures of the Beat Generation in the 1950s. He vigorously opposed militarism, materialism and sexual repression...

, Arthur Miller
Arthur Miller
Arthur Asher Miller was an American playwright and essayist. He was a prominent figure in American theatre, writing dramas that include plays such as All My Sons , Death of a Salesman , The Crucible , and A View from the Bridge .Miller was often in the public eye,...

, and Marilyn Monroe
Marilyn Monroe
Marilyn Monroe was an American actress, singer, model and showgirl who became a major sex symbol, starring in a number of commercially successful motion pictures during the 1950s....

.

Voznesensky's friendship with many contemporary writers, artists and other intellectuals is reflected in his poetry and essays. He is known to wider audiences for the superhit Million of Scarlet Roses that he penned for Alla Pugacheva
Alla Pugacheva
Alla Borisovna Pugacheva or Pugachova , born 15 April 1949), is а Soviet and Russian musical performer. Her career started in 1965 and continues to this day...

 in 1984 and for the hugely successful rock opera
Rock opera
A rock opera is a work of rock music that presents a storyline told over multiple parts, songs or sections in the manner of opera. A rock opera differs from a conventional rock album, which usually includes songs that are not unified by a common theme or narrative. More recent developments include...

 Juno and Avos (1979), based on the life and death of Nikolay Rezanov.

His creations have been turned into works of theatre. One collection of his poems, "Antimiry" ("Anti-worlds") served as the basis for a famous performance at the Taganka Theater in 1965. "Save your Faces" was performed at the same venue. "Juno and Avos" was performed at the Lenin's Komsomol Theater (now Lenkom
Lenkom Theatre
Lenkom Theatre is the official name of what was once known as the Moscow State Theatre named after Lenin's Komsomol. Designed by Illarion Ivanov-Schitz, it was built in 1907 to house a Merchant's Club, and was home to many theatrical and musical performances...

). Others on foreign territory.

Notable works


  • The Triangular Pear
  • First Frost
  • Antiworlds
  • Stained-glass Master
  • Violoncello Oakleaf
  • Videoms and Fortune Telling by the Book
  • Arrow in the Wall
  • I am Goya
  • A Shallow Paradise
  • Dogalypse
  • Click to see: http://vagalecs.narod.ru/Vozncoll.htm
  • THE PARABOLIC BALLAD
  • THE ANTIWORLDS
  • MY FRIEND'S LIGHT
  • HER STORY
  • RUSSIAN-AMERICAN ROMANCE
  • ABUSES AND AWARDS
  • A BALLAD (THESIS FOR A DOCTOR'S DEGREE)
  • Who Are YOU?
  • RUBBER SOULS
  • FATE
  • SELF-PORTRAIT
  • THE SONG
  • MODERN NATURE
  • "Million alyh roz" (with music by Raimonds Pauls
    Raimonds Pauls
    Raimonds Pauls is a Latvian and Soviet composer and piano player who is well-known and respected in Latvia and the former Soviet Union.-Music:...

    )

Awards and nominations


In 1978 Voznesensky was awarded the USSR State Prize
USSR State Prize
The USSR State Prize was the Soviet Union's state honour. It was established on September 9, 1966. After the breakup of the Soviet Union, the prize was followed up by the State Prize of the Russian Federation....

. He is an honorable member of ten academies, including the Russian academy of learning (1993), the American Academy of Arts and Letters, Parisian Académie Goncourt
Académie Goncourt
The Société littéraire des Goncourt , usually called the académie Goncourt , is a French literary organization based in Paris. It was founded by the French writer and publisher Edmond de Goncourt...

 and others.

On Tuesday, 23 December 2008, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev
Dmitry Medvedev
Dmitry Anatolyevich Medvedev is the third President of the Russian Federation.Born to a family of academics, Medvedev graduated from the Law Department of Leningrad State University in 1987. He defended his dissertation in 1990 and worked as a docent at his alma mater, now renamed to Saint...

 bestowed a state award upon Voznesensky at the Kremlin.

Legacy


A minor planet
Minor planet
An asteroid group or minor-planet group is a population of minor planets that have a share broadly similar orbits. Members are generally unrelated to each other, unlike in an asteroid family, which often results from the break-up of a single asteroid...

 3723 Voznesenskij
3723 Voznesenskij
3723 Voznesenskij is a main belt asteroid with an orbital period of 1237.0180964 days . The asteroid was discovered on April 1, 1976.-References:...

, discovered by Soviet
Soviet Union
The Soviet Union , officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics , was a constitutionally socialist state that existed in Eurasia between 1922 and 1991....

 astronomer Nikolai Stepanovich Chernykh in 1976, is named after him.

English critic John Bayley described his feelings after hearing a Voznesensky recitiation of "I Am Goya":

Honours and awards


  • Order of Merit for the Fatherland
    Order of Merit for the Fatherland
    The Order of Merit for the Fatherland was instituted on 2 March 1994 by Presidential Decree. The statutes describe it as a decoration for merit, not an order of knights....

    , 2nd and 3rd classes
  • Order of the Red Banner of Labour
    Order of the Red Banner of Labour
    The Order of the Red Banner of Labour was an order of the Soviet Union for accomplishments in labour and civil service. It is the labour counterpart of the military Order of the Red Banner. A few institutions and factories, being the pride of Soviet Union, also received the order.-History:The Red...

  • USSR State Prize
    USSR State Prize
    The USSR State Prize was the Soviet Union's state honour. It was established on September 9, 1966. After the breakup of the Soviet Union, the prize was followed up by the State Prize of the Russian Federation....


External links