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Entries / Belyaev M.P., (1836-1903), public figure

Belyaev M.P., (1836-1903), public figure

Categories / Art/Music, Theatre/Personalia
Categories / Economy/Personalia

BELYAEV Mitrofan Petrovich (1836, St. Petersburg - 1903, St. Petersburg) was a timber merchant, patron of arts, public figure and publisher of music scores, amateur musician. He graduated from the German Reformatory College (1851), participated in amateur quartettes and orchestras, and was a member of the German Singers' Circle. In 1880, he was elected member, and in 1898, head of the Society of Chamber Music (1878-1917). At that time he arranged quartette performances in his house (Nikolaevskaya Street, today 50 Marata Street; commemorative plaque) which gradually grew into Belyaev's Fridays held regularly until his death. The music meetings were led by N. A. Rimsky-Korsakov; in attendance were his friends and disciples A. P. Borodin, A. K. Glazunov, A. K. Lyadov, later F. S. Akimenko, N. N. Cherepnin, and A. V. Ossovsky. Moscow composers P. I. Tchaikovsky, S. I. Taneev, and A. N. Skryabin also attended the meetings. Belyaev thought his "salon of professionals" to be a school; it was referred to as Belyaev's Circle. In 1885, Belyaev established the Russian Symphonic Concert Society, which existed up to 1918, and contributed much to development of Russian music. Concerts were organized 6 to 7 times a season, most often in the hall of the Noble Assembly. In 1886-1900, they were usually opened by Rimsky-Korsakov. Belyaev also organized Russian Quartette Evenings (1891) and in 1884 established Glinka Prizes for the best musical composition by a Russian composer. They were selected by Belyaev personally and were given out through V. V. Stasov annually on November 27 - on the day of premieres of Glinka’s operas — Life for the Tsar and Ruslan and Lyudmila. After Belyaev's death prizes were awarded by the Tutorial Council. M. A. Balakirev, Borodin, Tchaikovsky, Rimsky-Korsakov, and Lyadov were the first to be awarded. Glazunov received the prize every year in 1885-1903; Skryabin was awarded every year in 1897-1902. Belyaev gave out a total of 130 prizes for a total amount of some 70,000 roubles in 20 years. All in all 216 composers of different genres were awarded prizes before 1917. In 1893, the Society of Chamber Music established the prize for the best composition, also financed by Belyaev. In 1885, Belyaev established the M. P. Belyaev music score publishing house in Leipzig with the purpose to bring together the achievements of Russian music with superb German technologies of music score printing. The company published 2 900 titles by 47 Russian composers in the first 25 years. The music scores were sold in Russia and in Europe; vocal compositions were published with text in Russian and European languages, which contributed to a growing number of fans of Russian music abroad. Belyaev bequeathed his stocks and immovable property to continuation of his musical undertakings entrusted to the Tutorial Council for the Encouragement of Russian Composers and Musicians, whose bylaws were written by him. The Council was subordinated to the Ministry of Home Affairs. The first members of the Council included Rimsky-Korsakov (chairman), Lyadov and Glazunov. Belyaev was buried in Novodevichye Cemetery, his ashes were transferred to the Necropolis of Masters of Art in 1936.

References: Трайнин В. Я. М. П. Беляев и его кружок. М., 1975.

A. L. Porfiryeva.

Akimenko Fedor Stepanovich
Balakirev Mily Alexeevich
Belyaev Mitrofan Petrovich
Borodin Alexander Porfirievich
Cherepnin Nikolay Nikolaevich
Glazunov Alexander Konstantinovich
Glinka Mikhail Ivanovich
Lyadov Anatoly Konstantinovich
Ossovsky Alexander Vyacheslavovich
Rimsky-Korsakov Nikolay Andreevich
Skryabin Alexander Nikolaevich
Stasov Vladimir Vasilievich
Taneev Sergey Ivanovich
Tchaikovsky Peter Ilyich

Marata St./Saint Petersburg, city, house 50

Трайнин В. Я. М. П. Беляев и его кружок. Л., 1975

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Necropolis of Artists