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Virtuosi AbroadSoviet Music and Imperial Competition during the Early Cold War, 1945-1958$
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Kiril Tomoff

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780801453120

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9780801453120.001.0001

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Oistrakh and the Impresario

Oistrakh and the Impresario

Soviet Concert Tours and Systemic Integration

Chapter:
(p.146) Chapter 5 Oistrakh and the Impresario
Source:
Virtuosi Abroad
Author(s):

Kiril Tomoff

Publisher:
Cornell University Press
DOI:10.7591/cornell/9780801453120.003.0006

This chapter examines the Soviet encounter with the cultural facilitator of the mid-century Western cultural production system: the impresario. Soon after their artists began touring the West, Soviet policy makers realized that the Western impresarios organized much more successful exchanges than did the system of cultural diffusion developed by the Soviets. The decision to entrust tours to impresarios instead of old networks of friendship societies resulted in more successful tours, but also in outright integration into the U.S.-dominated global economy of music production. Once Soviet cultural bureaucrats identified reliable impresarios, such as Sol Hurok in the United States, they adapted quickly to maximize the propaganda and financial advantages of those partnerships. In a material sense, the transimperial exchange of musicians created a short term win-win situation.

Keywords:   impresarios, Soviet cultural system, music production, Western music, Soviet music, Sol Hurok, transimperial exchange

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