Aleksey Stanchinsky (1888-1914), A guide to research



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Aleksey Vladimirovich Stanchinsky (1888-1914) is a highly unusual, but largely understudied figure in the larger narratives of late-19th-and-early-20th-century Russian music. A tremendously talented child composer, as contemporary information suggests, as he grew, however, his compositional output experienced a shift, largely due in part to his struggles with dementia  !2 praecox (an early from of schizophrenia), between the age of seventeen and his mysterious drowning at the age of twenty-six. For scholars of 19th-century Russian music, it should come as no surprise that the corpus of literature pertaining to Stanchinsky is not vast. Despite the on- going efforts of European, Eastern, and Western scholars to add to the breadth of literature on 19th-century Russian music, whether it be to reconstruct, reconsider in different contexts, or other, the corpus tends to place emphasis on major composers. Furthermore, prior to the mid- twentieth century, Russian music criticism was the province of “dilettantes” and “popularizers,” who, due to an “uncritical reliance” on problematic secondary sources, left an “unparalleled perpetuation of error and misevaluation”1 that continues to pose a problem for Western scholars wishing to approach Russian music from an academic or scholarly perspective. In the past, a few scholars2 have been brave enough to reassess the life and works of major Russian composers; however, with no emphasis on the lesser-known composers, a lacuna remains in western music historiographies. The justification for this document therefore is in direct response to the on- going need for bibliographic assistance in the aid of researchers who wish to help bridge-the-gap between Russian sources—both primary and secondary—and the composer in question (in this case, Stanchinsky).



Music, Stanchinsky, Russian