Dmitri Shostakovich was born in St. Petersburg, Russian on September 25, 1906. He was the second child of Dmitry Boleslavovich and Sof′ya Vasil′yevna and he had two siblings. At the age of nine, Shostakovich took a piano lesson and discovered that he was musically gifted. When he was twelve years old, he composed a funeral march to honor Kadet Party leaders that Bolsheviks murdered, in 1918. Shostakovich stared to take classes at the Petrograd Conservatory in 1919. However, he did not do well in most of them, but he did extremely well in the artistic classes. Shostakovich composed “1st Symphony” and premiered it in 1926.
Shostakovich worked as a concert pianist after he graduated to earn some money. He also composed at the same time. At the Warsaw International Piano Competition in 1927, Shostakovich met Bruno Walter, a conductor. He liked Shostakovich’s works and he said that he will conduct Shostakovich’s “1st Symphony” in Berlin. Shostakovich completed his “2nd Symphony” in 1927, and he started to work on the music for the opera “The Nose”. When the opera premiered in 1930, the opera did not do well and received many terrible reviews from the audience. Because of this opera, Shostakovich’s “3rd Symphony” was not perceived well
Shostakovich married his first wife, Nina Varzar, in 1932. In 1935, they were separated when Shostakovich had an affair with Yelena Konstantinovskaya. They were later reunited and the born of their first child strengthen their relationship. Shostakovich worked on the opera “Lady Macbeth of the Mtsensk District” while he worked at Leningrad Theatre of Young Workers, known as TRAM in Russian acronym, in the early 1930s. When the opera premiered in 1934, the opera were successful. He was praised “it could have been written only by a Soviet composer brought up in the best tradition of Soviet culture.”
In 1936, Dmitri Shostakovich started to receive criticism from the officials in Soviet Union, despite his success in “Lady Macbeth of the Mtsensk District” not to long ago. He was condemned as a “formalist” and he withdrew his “4th Symphony”, which was supposed to premiere in 1936. Also, during this time, Shostakovich witnessed many of his friends were arrested during the Soviet Union’s “Great Terror”. Shostakovich was able to perform his “5th Symphony” in 1937 because it was more conservative. The symphony was a success. The symphony was liked by many people because it was very emotional and many people can relate to it. Shostakovich began working with string quartets and taught music composition at the Conservatory in Leningrad after his “5th Symphony”.
Shostakovich composed his “6th Symphony” between April and October of 1939. In 1941, right in the middle of World War II, Shostakovich worked on his “7th Symphony”. He aided the war for Soviet Union by posing as a fire warden for propaganda poster and talked in radio. He completed his “7th Symphony” in October of 1941 after he was forced to evacuate to Kuybishev. The...