In December 2017, the Belarusian State Academy of Music celebrated its 85th anniversary. Founded in 1932, the Academy of Music (until 1992 – the Belarusian State Conservatory named after A.V. Lunacharsky) is a major center of Belarusian musical performing arts, musicology and pedagogy*. In 2000, the Academy of Music was awarded a status of the leading Higher Education Institution of the national education system in the field of musical art.
The Academy includes five Departments, twenty Subdepartments, such unique structures as an Opera Studio, a Cabinet of Traditional Music Cultures, a Sound Recording Laboratory, etc. More than half of the scientific and creative staff of the Academy have been awarded honorary titles, more than 70% have academic degrees and academic titles. Graduates of the Academy are actively engaged in performing and pedagogical activities in our country, and they successfully work in countries of the near and far abroad.
The history of the Belarusian State Academy of Music is inextricably linked with the history of the whole music culture of Belarus of the 20th century. It was the Academy of Music, where a national composer’s school was formed, the founder of which was Professor Vasily Zolotarev, a disciple of N.A. Rimsky-Korsakov. The first graduates of the composition class were Anatoly Bogatyrev, Peter Podkovyrov, Vasily Efimov, Anatoly Popov and Mikhail Kroshner. Creative activities of composers Nikolai Aladov, Vladimir Olovnikov, Evgeny Glebov, Igor Luchenok, Dmitry Smolsky, Andrei Mdivani, Galina Gorelova, Vyacheslav Kuznetsov, Viktor Voitik, Oleg Khodosko and others are connected with the Academy. The best traditions of the Belarusian stage have also been reflected in the oeuvre of the graduates of the Academy of Music – composers Eduard Zaritsky, Leonid Zakhlevny, Vladimir Budnik, Valery Ivanov, Yadviga Poplavskaya, Vasily Rainchik, Igor Palivoda, Oleg Eliseenkov, Vladimir Karizna (junior) and others.
The Belarusian performing school has received wide recognition. Among the teachers of the Academy there are famous Belarusian performers: conductors Mikhail Drinevsky, Nikolai Kolyadko, Boris Chudakov, pianists Igor Olovnikov, Yury Gilduk, Sergei Mikulik, Natalia Gromova, folk instrument players Evgeny Gladkov, Galina Osmolovskaya, Nikolai Sevryukov, vocalists Tamara Nizhnikova, Lyudmila Kolos, Natalia Rudneva, Eduard Pelageichenko, Mikhail Zhilyuk, Mikhail Zdanevich, Peter Ridiger, Elena Shvedova, Nina Sharubina, Anastasia Moskvina, wind instrument players Vladimir Budkevich, Boris Nichkov, Vladimir Tarashkevich and many others. Choreographic art at the Academy is associated with the names of Valentin Elizariev, Viktor Sarkisyan, Olga Lappo, Nina Diyachenko and Natalia Furman**.
Every year educatees of the Belarusian State Academy of Music take part in republican and international performing art competitions, festivals, competitions of research papers. Many winners of prestigious music competitions become Scholarship Holders of the Special Fund of the President of the Republic of Belarus for the Support of Talented Youth, the Fund for the Social Support of Gifted Students, and in the future they join the teaching staff of the Academy. Among them are Alexander Muzykantov, Elena Ostashkina-Myslivchik, Natalia Korotina, Olga Makeeva, Julia Okhotnikova (piano), Elena Gutina (composition), Natalia Ganul (musicology), Ekaterina Pukst (violin), Alexandra Ivanova (viola), Nikita Petrov (saxophone), Maxim Shkulepa (trumpet), Aram Beknazaryan (percussion instruments), Veronika Praded (dulcimer), Alexander Shuvalov, Irina Daraganova, Sergei Butor (bayan), Alexei Daraganov, Lidia Skachko (accordion), Inessa Bodyako, Vyacheslav Larin (choral conducting), Anastasia Khrapitskaya (vocal) and others. The active participation of the state in the creative destiny of young musicians helps them to open their potential, find an incentive and new prospects for further creative growth.
A significant role in the concert life of the Academy and the Republic is played by performance ensembles: Symphony and Chamber Orchestras, Wind Instrument Orchestra, Orchestras of Russian and Belarusian Folk Instruments, Student Choir, Instrumental Dulcimer Ensemble “Lileya”, Trumpet Ensemble and Flute Ensemble that are engaged in various performance activities. Concert programs of the student performance ensembles of the Academy have received recognition not only in our country, but also abroad.
The Belarusian State Academy of Music is one of the major research centers in the field of liberal arts – musicology, folklore, sociology, aesthetics and music pedagogy. At the Academy there are Doctors of Science C.N. Doulova, I.D. Nazina, R.I. Sergienko, V.A. Chaban, N.V. Shimansky, V.L. Yakonyuk and O.V. Dadiomova, who heads the Dissertation Advisory Committee. The Academy organizes scientific and methodical conferences on the problems of music education, performing art, theory and history of Belarusian and world music, ethnomusicology, including the annual Scientific Conference in memory of L.S. Mukharinskaya. Graduates of the Academy have the opportunity to undertake further study in Master’s, postgraduate training and doctoral programs. At the Academy of Music there is a Student Scientific and Creative Society. Research papers of students of various specialties are rewarded at international and republican competitions. A lot of activities are conducted towards publication of the scientific and theoretical journal “News of the Belarusian State Academy of Music”, scholarly works, thematic collections of articles, resource books, music chrestomathies and scores, and curricula.
International cooperation in the field of Higher education, science and culture is carried out within the framework of international agreements concluded by the Belarusian State Academy of Music with foreign scientific and education institutions and organizations. In recent years, the international relations of the Academy have expanded significantly, agreements on bilateral cooperation have been concluded with a large number of foreign institutions: University of Music Franz Liszt Weimar (Weimar, Federal Republic of Germany), Music Conservatory “Giuseppe Tartini” (Trieste, Italian Republic), Shanghai Conservatory of Music (Shanghai, People’s Republic of China), Zhejiang Conservatory of Music (Zhejiang, People’s Republic of China), Central China Normal University (Wuhan, People’s Republic of China), P.A. Serebryakov Volgograd Conservatory (Volgograd, Russian Federation), P.I. Tchaikovsky South Ural State Institute of Arts (Chelyabinsk, Russian Federation), Ufa State Institute of Arts named after Zagir Ismagilov (Ufa, Russian Federation), Saratov State Conservatory named after L.V. Sobinov (Saratov, Russian Federation) and others. There are above 60 Partner Institutions, including Conservatories, Academies of Music and other Higher Education Institutions, in cooperation with which the Belarusian State Academy of Music conducts educational and creative projects.
Among the outstanding foreign graduates of the Academy are Candidates in Art History – Professor of the Liaoning Normal University Ne Na (PRC), First Vice-President of the Zhengzhou University, Associate Professor Sun Weibo (PRC), Head of the Singing and Master Courses Department of the Academy of Arts of Jiaxing University, Associate Professor Li Erun (PRC), Associate Professor of the Music Department of the Faculty of Fine Arts of the Yarmouk University Aziz Madi (Jordan); Senior Lecturer of the Music Department of the Faculty of Fine Arts of the Yarmouk University Iyad Mohammad (Jordan); Director of the Ahmed Adnan Saygun Arts Center (Izmir), Honorary Consul of the Republic of Belarus in Adana Bayık Mustafa (Turkey); Associate Professor of the Autonomous University of Zacatecas Alvarez Romero Noela (Mexico) and others.
The Academy of Music is a modern Education Institution that employs achievements of information technologies: a computer class and most of the Departments are connected to the Internet, the Sound Recording Laboratory is fitted with modern equipment.
* In 1992, the Belarusian State Conservatory named after A.V. Lunacharsky was renamed as the Belarusian Academy of Music (Resolution of the Council of Ministers of the Republic of Belarus of July 30, 1992 No. 465). In 1997, the Belarusian Academy of Music was given a status of the “state” institution (Order on registration of the Ministry of Education of the Republic of Belarus of July 30, 1997 No. 432). In 2001, the Belarusian State Academy of Music was registered as an Education Institution “Belarusian State Academy of Music” (Decision of the Minsk City Executive Committee of August 2, 2001 No. 1010).
** The history of the Belarusian State Academy of Music is exhaustively covered in the materials of the third (2002) and twentieth (2012) and thirty-first (2017) editions of the scientific and theoretical journal “News of the Belarusian State Academy of Music”, in the articles and booklets devoted to anniversaries, in a number of publications of the Printing and Publication Department and in funds of the library.