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Mieczyslaw Weinberg (1919-1996) was born in Poland. With the Nazi invasion, Weinberg fled eastward to the Soviet Union. Most of his family perished in the Holocaust. During his lifetime Weinberg was often not given the recognition his work warranted, though this lack of appreciation is quickly changing as audiences get the opportunity to hear his extraordinary work. He is still perhaps best known as a close associate and friend of Dmitri Shostakovich. In fact, the two composers often previewed works for each other before allowing more public hearings. The overall reception of Weinberg’s work was dampened by many factors, including both a general antisemitism as well as the specific connection to his father-in-law, Mikhoels. Mikhoels was killed by the Stalinist regime for his purported involvement with the so-called “Doctor’s Plot” against Stalin. Weinberg was soon after arrested, and survived this episode only by outliving Stalin, who died a month after Weinberg’s arrest.

Sources:

Elphick, D. (2014, Winter). Weinberg, Shostakovich and the Influence of Anxiety. Musical Times, 155, 49-62,2.
Fanning, David. Mieczyslaw Weinberg: In Search of Freedom. Hofheim: Wolke Verlag, 2010.

[photo of Mieczyslaw Weinberg]. n.d. www.weinbergsociety.com. Web. 15 June, 2017.