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Alexander Vasilyevich Alexandrov
Birth: Apr. 13, 1883
Death: Jul. 8, 1946

Conductor, Composer. Founder of the famed Red Army Choir and composer of Russia's national anthem. Alexander Vasilyevich Alexandrov was born in Plakhino, near Moscow. He trained as a choirboy at St. Petersburg's Kazan Cathedral and later studied at the Moscow Conservatory, where he became a professor in 1918. In 1928 he organized the small Red Army Song Ensemble to boost morale and encourage amateur music-making among the soldiers; it quickly won the patronage of dictator Josef Stalin and by 1933 had grown to 300 members. Their repertory came to include folk and propaganda songs, marches, and adaptations of hymns and opera arias, while its orchestra combined western and traditional Russian instruments (balalaikas and bayans were prominent). They won the Grand Prix at the 1937 International Exhibition in Paris. Promoted to general during World War II, Alexandrov led the Red Army Choir in over 1500 performances near various combat zones and in military hospitals; he also wrote the popular patriotic song "Sacred War" (1941). He died of a heart attack on tour in occupied Berlin. After his death the Red Army Choir went on to even greater renown under the direction of his son Boris, and it remains active as the Alexandrov Choir. Alexandrov's anthem for his country has a complicated history. He originally wrote it in 1939 as an agit-prop tune, the "Hymn of the Bolshevik Party". When the Central Committee announced a competition for a new national anthem in 1942, he submitted this song with new lyrics by Sergei Mikhalkov; it was chosen over entries by Shostakovich and Khachaturian and officially adopted as the "Hymn of the Soviet Union" in March 1944. From 1953 to 1977 the lyrics were suppressed because they hailed Stalin, and only instrumental versions were performed until Mikhalkov revised the text, replacing Stalin's name with Lenin's. With the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991 it was dropped in favor of Mikhail Glinka's "Patriotic Song". In 2000 Alexandrov's anthem was restored by President Vladimir Putin, again with new lyrics by Mikhalkov, and it is now called the "Hymn of the Russian Federation". (bio by: Bobb Edwards) 
 
Family links: 
 Children:
  Boris Alexandrovich Alexandrov (1905 - 1994)*
  Vladimir Alexandrovich Alexandrov (1910 - 1978)*
  Alexander Alexandrovich Alexandrov (1912 - 1942)*
 
*Calculated relationship
 
Burial:
Novodevichy Cemetery
Moscow
Moscow Federal City, Russian Federation
Plot: Section 3
 
Maintained by: Find A Grave
Originally Created by: Bobb Edwards
Record added: Jan 15, 2008
Find A Grave Memorial# 23980741
Alexander Vasilyevich Alexandrov
Added by: Bobb Edwards
 
Alexander Vasilyevich Alexandrov
Added by: paulofannandale
 
Alexander Vasilyevich Alexandrov
Added by: paulofannandale
 
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