Russian violinist Khandoshkin and 18th century culture
Ivan Evstafievich Handoshkin – the founder of Russian violin playing. A talented musician is a self-taught person. He was tireless. Persistent and stubborn fighter for the development of an original Russian musical culture.
With the names of M. Berezovsky, I. Handoshkin, V. Pashkevich, M. Matinsky,
M. Sokolovsky, E. Fomina connected the period of formation and development of Russian musical culture of the late 18th century, which led to the emergence of Russian musical professionalism. During this period, the foundations were laid for the subsequent flowering of national music of the 19th – 20th centuries.
In the first half of the 18th century, with the rapid growth of industry and agriculture, class contradictions intensified. They reached their climax in the second half of the 18th century, when the country was swept by numerous peasant unrest and armed uprisings. An indelible mark in the history of Russia was left by the Peasant War of 1773 – 1775, led by Pugachev.
Among other consequences, the Pugachev revolt strengthened the educational direction in the Russian social movement of the 18th century, strengthened the position of the enlighteners. It expanded the circle of their adherents. For the most part, Russian enlighteners sympathized with the disenfranchised peasantry, stood by its side and tried to help him in the fight against the oppressors.
Russian writers – educators, such as D.I. Fonvizin, N.I. Novikov, I.P. Pnin, I.A. Krylov and others, in spite of strict prohibitions of censorship, in one form or another reflected in their work the struggle of the masses against the yoke of serfdom.
The Russian liberation movement put forward a number of writers and critics, and among them the outstanding enlightener – revolutionary A.N. Radishchev. He led and launched a ruthless criticism of the feudal social system. With extraordinary courage and directness, the writer characterizes landlord oppression and the growing popular struggle for a better share.
The activity of the Russian Enlightenment was that guiding light that indicated the direction in which the struggle of the people for their emancipation was to unfold.
Khandoshkin knew these enlighteners closely (he was personally acquainted with many), heard their statements, read literary works and completely shared their views.
Russian musical culture of the 18th century, despite the strong influence of the forms and genres that dominated Western European music, was distinguished by a wealth of national originality and traditions both in the field of choral singing and in the field of instrumental folk music – a legacy of the art of buffoons. Even the court Singing Chapel, whose activities were related to the work of foreign composers and performers invited to Russia, retained its originality.
The development of the musical culture of the 18th century in Russia is characterized by a tense struggle for the creation of progressive democratic art. It is significant that most of the leading cultural figures of that time came from their lower classes, and only a small part belonged to the nobility class. The great Russian thinker, scientist, artist, poet, founder of Russian classical literature M.V. Lomonosov was the son of a peasant – a Pomor, a scientist and poet V.K. Tredyakovsky is the son of an Astrakhan priest. Many talented sculptors, painters, musicians of the 18th century left the lower social strata, not to mention those who came out of the number of serfs. Children of soldiers, sailors, palace servants — grooms, horse-drawn carriages, stokers, and others — were admitted to the Art Academy. Boys from Ukrainian villages, most of the children of peasants and village clergy, were recruited to the court chapel. Starting in 1740, students-musicians from the same Singing chapel were admitted to the court orchestra. Thus, Russian musicians, artists, architects. The sculptors were bound by strong bonds with their people, with its traditions, aspirations. This, of course, was reflected in all their activities and creative work.
The emerging young Russian composer school was at that time under the direct influence of the advanced ideas that dominated the progressive part of Russian society. Craving for nationality. Broad democracy was characteristic of Russian music in the second half of the 18th century. Such composers as M. Berezovsky, P. Skokov. M. Sokolovsky, V. Pashkevich, E. Fomin, I. Handoshkin, M. Matinsky, D. Bortnyansky and others, sought to reflect in their work the real Russian reality.
Already the first comic operas by Fomin, Pashkevich, Sokolovsky differed both in form and content from Western European ones. These operas were based on Russian folk song. On the basis of folk song grew all the democratic musical art of the 18th century.
Khandoshkin was one of the first to use and brilliantly processed Russian peasant and city folk songs in his works for violin and other instruments. He also gained fame as a tireless collector of folk songs.