[BASSOON] Nabokov, Nicolas. (1903-1978) [Sharrow, Leonard. (1915-2004)]
"Litany for Bassoon and Piano" - Autograph Musical Score
Autograph manuscript of the Russian-born composer's Litany for bassoon and piano, written for the prominent American bassoonist Leonard Sharrow. Black ink on 17 loose blue-print sheets, pages numbered in pencil; changes have been made on pp. 5 (notes changed in pencil), 14 (small deletions cut out), 16 (tempo marking changed in pen), and 17 (small square cut out). In very fine condition overall. Rare. One photocopy of the holograph score is held at the SUNY Buffalo Library, but the work is apparently unpublished.
A first cousin of Vladimir Nabokov, Nabokov was born to a family of landed Russian gentry and gained prominence when he composed the ballet-oratorio Ode for Diaghilev's Ballets Russes in 1928. After living in Germany and France, he emigrated to the U.S. and became a citizen in 1939. His close friends included the philosopher and fellow émigré Isaiah Berlin and the famous Russian composer Igor Stravinsky. His compositions are most closely identified with dance; although well-connected socially with many prominent cultural figures throughout his life, very little of his music has yet been recorded.
From the collection of Leo Smit (1921-1999), the composer, pianist, conductor, and educator whose career spanned seven decades of musical life in the United States. A friend and colleague of many of the most important musical figures of the twentieth century, Smit had close relationships with Igor Stravinsky, Béla Bartók, Aaron Copland, Leonard Bernstein, Harold Shapero, William Schuman, Alex Haieff, Leopold Stokowski, and Lukas Foss, and was a strong advocate and performer of contemporary music, as well as the composer of more than 100 works.