A CHRONOLOGICAL VIEW OF WESTERN MUSIC HISTORY IN THE CONTEXT OF WORLD EVENTS

Alfred Schnittke

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August 28, 1941: World War II: Iranian forces surrender to the British and Indians at Kermanshah. Reza Shah Pahlavi is forced to abdicate in favor of his son. A new government under Mohammad Ali Khan Forughi takes power. Because of the German invasion of the Soviet Union, Stalin dissolves the Autonomous Republic of the Volga Germans and sends all ethnic Germans east. Harry Schnittke, father of Alfred Schnittke (6) proves that he is a Jew and this allows his family to remain in Engels (Boronsk).

Finnish forces capture Viipuri (Vyborg), 120 km northwest of Leningrad.

German troops take Tallinn.

Soviet soldiers destroy the Zaporozhe dam on the Dnieper.

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February 18, 1952: The Symphony-Concerto op.125 for cello and orchestra by Sergey Prokofiev (60) is performed for the first time, at Moscow Conservatory.  The concert is attended by the ailing composer but he is too ill to go to the stage to receive applause.  Also in the audience is Alfred Schnittke (17).
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December 17, 1953: Symphony no.10 op.93 by Dmitry Shostakovich (47) is performed for the first time, in Leningrad Philharmonic Bolshoy Hall. It is a great success.  In the audience is a very impressed Alfred Schnittke (19).
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March 26, 1960: Aaron Copland (59) and Lukas Foss (37) again meet with young Soviet composers and hear their music, including the oratorio Nagasaki by Alfred Schnittke (25). In the evening they dine at the home of Dmitri Shostakovich (53). Foss and Dmitri Kabalevsky play a Haydn symphony four-hands on the piano.
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December 20, 1960: Songs of War and Peace, a cantata by Alfred Schnittke (26) to words of Leontyev and Pokrovsky, is performed for the first time, in the Great Hall of Moscow Conservatory.  After the performance, Dmitri Shostakovich (54) shakes Schnittke's hand, calling it "a remarkable work."
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February 4, 1961: Alfred Schnittke (26) marries his second wife, Irina Katayeva, a pianist, at her parents’ apartment in Moscow.
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November 29, 1963: Concerto for violin and orchestra no.1 by Alfred Schnittke (29) is performed for the first time, in Moscow.
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May 10, 1964: Sonata for violin and piano no.1 by Alfred Schnittke (29) is performed for the first time, in Kazan.
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December 1, 1965: Incidental music to Cholendro’s play Somebody’s Life by Alfred Schnittke (31) is performed for the first time, in Mossoviet Theatre, Moscow.
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April 17, 1966: Incidental music to Smuul’s play The Colonel’s Widow by Alfred Schnittke (31) is performed for the first time, in Mossoviet Theatre, Moscow.
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June 20, 1966: Variations on a Chord for piano by Alfred Schnittke (31) is performed for the first time, in Moscow.
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July 12, 1966: Concerto for violin and chamber orchestra no.2 by Alfred Schnittke (31) is performed for the first time, in Jyväskylä, Finland.  It carries a secret program about the teachings of Christ and the secular world which attacks them.
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May 7, 1967: String Quartet no.1 by Alfred Schnittke (31) is performed for the first time, in Leningrad.
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February 24, 1969: Violin Sonata no.2 by Alfred Schnittke (34) is performed for the first time, in Kazan.  Critics are very pleased.
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October 19, 1969: ...pianissimo... for orchestra by Alfred Schnittke (34) is performed for the first time, in Donaueschingen.
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November 22, 1969: Sonata for violin and chamber orchestra by Alfred Schnittke (34) is performed for the first time, in Kuybyshev.
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January 3, 1970: Incidental music to the play Way of the Cross after Tolstoy by Alfred Schnittke (35) is performed for the first time, in the Central Theatre of the Soviet Army, Moscow.
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December 21, 1971: The first and fourth of the Little Pieces for piano by Alfred Schnittke (37) is performed for the first time, in Moscow.
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March 27, 1973: Suite in Old Style for violin and piano by Alfred Schnittke (38) is performed for the first time, in Moscow.
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February 9, 1974: The Symphony no.1 by Alfred Schnittke (39) is performed for the first time, in Gorky. This marks the first time a work by a Soviet avant-garde composer is heard in a significant venue.  Many of Moscow's musical intelligentsia travel from the capital to hear it.
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March 27, 1974: Two works for violin and piano by Alfred Schnittke (39) are performed for the first time, in Moscow: Gratulations Rondo and Suite in Old Style.
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December 5, 1975: Prelude in Memory of DD Shostakovich (†0) by Alfred Schnittke (41) is performed for the first time, in Moscow.
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December 14, 1975: Cantus perpetuus for keyboard and percussion by Alfred Schnittke (41) is performed for the first time.
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December 31, 1975: Moz-Art for flute, clarinet, three violins, viola, cello, double bass, organ, and percussion by Alfred Schnittke (41) after Mozart (†184) is performed for the first time, in Moscow.
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December 26, 1976: Incidental music to Shaw’s play Caesar and Cleopatra by Alfred Schnittke (42) is performed for the first time, in Mossoviet Theatre, Moscow. Also premiered is incidental music to Schiller’s dramatic poem Don Carlos by Schnittke.
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March 21, 1977: Concerto grosso no.1 for two violins, harpsichord, prepared piano, and strings by Alfred Schnittke (42) is performed for the first time, in Leningrad.
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October 8, 1977: Requiem for chorus, organ, piano, electric bass, electric guitar, brass, percussion, and celesta by Alfred Schnittke (42) is performed for the first time, in Budapest.
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March 11, 1978: A letter from the conductor Algis Ziuraitis appears in Pravda. He criticizes the upcoming production of Tchaikovsky’s (†84) Queen of Spades at the Paris Opéra in a revised version by Alfred Schnittke (43). The Soviet government will bar the travel of the three most responsible, conductor Gennadi Rozhdestvensky, stage director Yuri Lyubimov and Schnittke. The production will thereupon collapse.
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June 7, 1978: Labyrinths, a ballet by Alfred Schnittke (43) to a story by Vasilyev, is performed completely for the first time, in Leningrad.
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June 9, 1978: Incidental music to the play The Inspector’s Tale after Gogol by Alfred Schnittke (43) is performed for the first time, in Taganka Theatre, Moscow.
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January 27, 1979: Concerto for violin and orchestra no.3 by Alfred Schnittke (44) is performed for the first time, in Moscow.
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May 26, 1979: Hymns I-IV for cello and chamber orchestra by Alfred Schnittke (44) is performed for the first time, in Moscow.
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September 15, 1979: Polyphonic Tango for instrumental ensemble by Alfred Schnittke (44) is performed for the first time, in Moscow.
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December 10, 1979: Concerto for piano and strings by Alfred Schnittke (45) is performed for the first time, in Leningrad.
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December 20, 1979: In memoriam for orchestra by Alfred Schnittke (45) is performed for the first time, in Moscow.
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December 20, 1979: Incidental music to Brecht’s play Turandot by Alfred Schnittke is performed for the first time, in Taganka Theatre, Moscow.
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December 28, 1979: Dedication to Igor Stravinsky (†8), Sergey Prokofiev (†26) and Dmitri Shostakovich (†4) for piano six-hands by Alfred Schnittke (45) is performed for the first time, in Moscow.
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January 20, 1980: Arvo Pärt (44) and his family arrive in Vienna from Tallinn and are met at the train station by a representative of Universal Edition who, through the efforts of Alfred Schnittke (45), gave them assistance in finding residence in Vienna.
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April 23, 1980: Symphony no.2 “St. Florian” for solo voices, chorus, and orchestra by Alfred Schnittke (45) to words of the Mass, is performed for the first time, in Royal Festival Hall, London.
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November 10, 1980: Three Madrigals for soprano, violin, viola, bass, vibraphone, and harpsichord by Alfred Schnittke (45) to words of Tanzer are performed for the first time, in Moscow.
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December 5, 1980: Gogol-Suite for orchestra by Alfred Schnittke (46) is performed for the first time, in London.
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February 26, 1981: Incidental music to the play Klim Samgin after Gorky by Alfred Schnittke (46) is performed for the first time, in Mayakovsky Theatre, Moscow.
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June 6, 1981: Three Scenes for soprano and instrumental ensemble by Alfred Schnittke (46) is performed for the first time, in Moscow.
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October 21, 1981: Minnesang for 52 choristers by Alfred Schnittke (46) to words of the medieval Minnesinger is performed for the first time, in Graz.
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November 5, 1981: Symphony no.3 by Alfred Schnittke (46) is performed for the first time, in the Leipzig Gewandhaus.
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November 8, 1981: Passacaglia for orchestra by Alfred Schnittke (46) is performed for the first time, in Baden-Baden.
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April 15, 1982: The three most important composers of the Soviet avant-garde are heard together for the first time in a major Moscow venue. Performed are Offertorium for violin and orchestra by Sofia Gubaidulina (50), Painting by Edison Denisov, and a suite from the incidental music to Dead Souls by Alfred Schnittke (47). It takes place in the Bolshoy Hall of the Moscow Conservatory.
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April 16, 1982: March for orchestra by Sofia Gubaidulina (50), Alfred Schnittke (47), and Edison Denisov is performed for the first time, in Moscow.
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April 25, 1982: Etudes Australes for piano by John Cage (69) is performed completely for the first time, in Witten, West Germany. Also premiered is Lebenslauf for four metronomes, percussion and piano by Alfred Schnittke (47). See 25 January 1975.
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September 11, 1982: Concerto grosso no.2 for violin, cello and orchestra by Alfred Schnittke (47) is performed for the first time, in Berlin.
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September 29, 1982: A Paganini for violin solo by Alfred Schnittke (47) is performed for the first time, in Leningrad.
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October 18, 1982: On a visit to Moscow, five West German composers have a “secret” meeting with seven Soviet composers in the apartment of Edison Denisov. Among the seven are Sofia Gubaidulina (50) and Alfred Schnittke (47). During a long night, the twelve are able to make deep personal and lasting connections.
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November 14, 1982: Septet for flute, two clarinets, violin, viola, cello, and harpsichord or organ by Alfred Schnittke (47) is performed for the first time, in Moscow.
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November 26, 1982: Incidental music to Niroshnichenko’s play Spare the White Bird by Alfred Schnittke (48) and two others is performed for the first time, in Young Spectator’s Theatre, Moscow.
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May 22, 1983: Schall und Hall for trombone and piano by Alfred Schnittke (48) is performed for the first time, in Moscow.
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June 19, 1983: Seid nüchtern und wachet, a cantata by Alfred Schnittke (48) is performed for the first time, in Vienna.
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December 30, 1983: Moz-Art à la Haydn for two violins and chamber orchestra by Alfred Schnittke (49) is performed for the first time, in Tbilisi.
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January 8, 1984: String Quartet no.3 by Alfred Schnittke (49) is performed for the first time, in Moscow.
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February 16, 1984: Incidental music to the play The Devils after Dostoyevsky by Alfred Schnittke (49) is performed for the first time, in London.
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April 12, 1984: Symphony no.4 by Alfred Schnittke (49) is performed for the first time, in Moscow.
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July 14, 1984: The third movement of a Concerto for choir by Alfred Schnittke (49) to words of Narekatzi (tr. Grebnev) is performed for the first time, in Istanbul. See 9 June 1986.
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September 11, 1984: Concerto for violin and orchestra no.4 by Alfred Schnittke (49) is performed for the first time, in West Berlin.
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January 16, 1985: Sketches, a ballet by Alfred Schnittke (50) to a story by Petrov after Gogol, is performed for the first time, in the Bolshoy Theatre, Moscow.
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March 15, 1985: Ritual for orchestra by Alfred Schnittke (50) is performed for the first time, in Novosibirsk.
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April 20, 1985: Concerto grosso no.3 for two violins, harpsichord, and 14 strings by Alfred Schnittke (50) is performed for the first time, in Moscow.
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June 2, 1985: A String Trio by Alfred Schnittke (50) is performed for the first time, in Moscow.
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July 19, 1985: Alfred Schnittke (50) suffers his first stroke at Pitsunda on the Black Sea. He will be pronounced clinically dead three times, but survives.
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November 7, 1985: Music to an Imagined Play for instrumental ensemble by Alfred Schnittke (50) is performed for the first time, in Moscow.
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January 9, 1986: Concerto for viola and orchestra by Alfred Schnittke (51) is performed for the first time, in Amsterdam.
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March 16, 1986: The original version of Symphony no.4 for four vocal soloists and chamber orchestra by Alfred Schnittke (51) is performed for the first time, in Moscow. See 12 April 1984 .
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May 7, 1986: Cello Concerto no.1 by Alfred Schnittke (51) is performed for the first time, in Munich.
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June 9, 1986: A Concerto for choir by Alfred Schnittke (51) to words of Narekatzi (tr. Grebnev) is performed completely for the first time, in Moscow. See 14 July 1984.
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July 27, 1986: Incidental music to the play Lord of the Flies after Golding by Alfred Schnittke (51) and Dmitry Viktorovich Pokrovsky is performed for the first time, in Leningrad.
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September 5, 1986: Incidental music to Olesha’s play The Beggar or Sand’s Death by Alfred Schnittke (51) is performed for the first time, in Moscow.
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April 27, 1987: Epilogue from “Peer Gynt” for chorus and orchestra by Alfred Schnittke (52) is performed for the first time, in Hamburg.
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May 13, 1987: Trio Sonata for chamber orchestra by Alfred Schnittke (52) is performed for the first time, in Moscow.
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June 10, 1987: Quasi una sonata for violin and chamber orchestra by Alfred Schnittke (52) is performed for the first time, in Milan.
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May 22, 1988: Piano Sonata no.1 by Alfred Schnittke (54) is performed for the first time, in New York.
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June 10, 1988: Der Sonnengesang des Franz von Assisi for chorus and six instruments by Alfred Schnittke (53) is performed for the first time, in London.
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July 29, 1988: Piano Quartet by Alfred Schnittke (53) is performed for the first time, in Kuhmo.
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August 21, 1988: Suite in Old Style for chamber orchestra by Alfred Schnittke (53) is performed for the first time, in Kiel. See 27 March 1974.
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September 18, 1988: Four Aphorisms for chamber orchestra by Alfred Schnittke (53) is performed for the first time, in Berlin.
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September 21, 1988: Incidental music to Erdman’s play The Mandate by Alfred Schnittke (53) is performed for the first time, in the Central Theatre of the Soviet Army, Moscow.
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November 10, 1988: Concerto Grosso No.4/Symphony No.5 by Alfred Schnittke (53) for violin, oboe, and orchestra is performed for the first time, in Amsterdam.
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December 26, 1988: Twelve Penitential Psalms for chorus by Alfred Schnittke (54) to 16th century Russian poems are performed for the first time, in Moscow. It is dedicated to the 1,000th anniversary of baptism in Russia.
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December 28, 1988: Klingende Buchstaben for cello by Alfred Schnittke (54) is performed for the first time, in Moscow.
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January 22, 1989: Peer Gynt, a ballet by Alfred Schnittke (54) to a story by Neumeier after Ibsen, is performed for the first time, in Hamburg.
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March 6, 1989: Three Poems by Viktor Schnittke for baritone and piano by Alfred Schnittke (54) are performed for the first time, in Gorky.
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April 22, 1989: Festlicher Tanz for wind quintet by Isang Yun (71) is performed for the first time, in Witten. Also premiered is 3x7 for clarinet, horn, trombone, harpsichord, violin, cello, and double bass by Alfred Schnittke (54).
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June 3, 1989: Incidental music to Pushkin’s play A Feast in Time of Plague by Alfred Schnittke (54) is performed for the first time, in Taganka Theatre, Moscow.
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June 4, 1989: Monologue for viola and string orchestra by Alfred Schnittke (54) is performed for the first time, in Bonn.
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July 2, 1989: Introduction to the First Sunday Feast for chorus and organ by Alfred Schnittke (54) is performed for the first time, in Lockenhaus.
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October 21, 1989: String Quartet no.4 by Alfred Schnittke (54) is performed for the first time, in Vienna.
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April 18, 1990: Concerto for piano four-hands and orchestra by Alfred Schnittke (55) is performed for the first time, in Moscow.
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May 27, 1990: Concerto for cello and orchestra no.2 by Alfred Schnittke (55) is performed for the first time, in Evian.
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June 14, 1990: Three Fragments for harpsichord by Alfred Schnittke (55) are performed for the first time, in Hamburg.
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August 2, 1990: Moz-Art à la Mozart for eight flutes and harp by Alfred Schnittke (55) after Mozart (†198) is performed for the first time, in Salzburg.
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September 22, 1990: Eight Songs from the Incidental Music to Friedrich Schiller’s “Don Carlos” for voice and piano (or guitar) by Alfred Schnittke (55) is performed for the first time, in Bad Urach.
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October 21, 1990: Five Aphorisms for piano by Alfred Schnittke (55) is performed for the first time, in New York.
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February 1, 1991: Piano Sonata no.2 by Alfred Schnittke (56) is performed for the first time, in Lübeck.
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February 5, 1991: Sutartines for string orchestra, organ, and percussion by Alfred Schnittke (56) is performed for the first time, in Vilnius.
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May 2, 1991: Concerto grosso no.5 for violin, orchestra, and off-stage piano by Alfred Schnittke (56) is performed for the first time, in New York.
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May 4, 1991: Festive Chant for violin, piano, chorus, and orchestra by Alfred Schnittke (56) is performed for the first time, in Moscow.
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July 13, 1991: Madrigal, in memoriam Oleg Kagan for violin or cello by Alfred Schnittke (56) is performed for the first time, in Kreuth, Germany.
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July 19, 1991: After a long interview for a documentary film in Hamburg, Alfred Schnittke (56) suffers his second stroke. An emergency operation is performed at a hospital in Eppendorf. This stroke is not as serious as the first and affects only his ability to walk. He will recover.
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April 13, 1992: Life with an Idiot, an opera by Alfred Schnittke (57) to words of Yerofeyev, is performed for the first time, in Amsterdam.
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November 8, 1992: Music for the 1927 silent film The Last Days of St. Petersburg by Alfred Schnittke (57) is performed for the first time, when the film is shown in Frankfurt.
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January 7, 1993: Alfred Schnittke (58) is awarded the first Triumph Prize from the Russian Independent Foundation.
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May 18, 1993: Hommage à Zhivago, a musical allegory by Alred Schnittke (58) to words of Lubimov after Pasternak, Blok, Vosnesensky, and Russian scriptures, is performed for the first time, in Odeon Hall, Vienna.
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May 25, 1993: Two works by Alfred Schnittke (58) are performed for the first time, in Evian: Trio for violin, cello, and piano, and Epilogue from the Ballet ‘Peer Gynt’ for cello, piano, and tape.
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June 15, 1993: Hommage à Grieg for orchestra by Alfred Schnittke (58) is performed for the first time, in Bergen on the 150th anniversary of Grieg’s (†85) birth.
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June 16, 1993: Incidental music to the play Doctor Zhivago after Pasternak by Alfred Schnittke (58) is performed for the first time, in Taganka Theatre, Moscow.
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September 25, 1993: Symphony no.6 by Alfred Schnittke (58) is performed for the first time, in Moscow.
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January 11, 1994: Concerto grosso no.6 for violin, piano, and string orchestra by Alfred Schnittke (59) is performed for the first time, in Moscow.
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January 27, 1994: Quartet for percussion by Alfred Schnittke (59) is performed for the first time, in Hamburg.
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February 10, 1994: Symphony no.7 by Alfred Schnittke (59) is performed for the first time, in New York. The composer makes his last trip to North America to be present.
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May 28, 1994: Mutter for mezzo-soprano and piano by Alfred Schnittke (59) is performed for the first time, in Berlin.
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June 2, 1994: In his home in Hamburg, Alfred Schnittke (59) feels the onset of a stroke and asks to be taken to the hospital.
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June 5, 1994: Alfred Schnittke (59) suffers a third stroke, while in hospital in Eppendorf, near Hamburg. It is very serious and rehabilitation will be slow.
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June 19, 1994: Improvisation for cello by Alfred Schnittke (59) is performed for the first time, in Paris.
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October 10, 1994: Sonata for violin and piano no.3 by Alfred Schnittke (59) is performed for the first time, in Moscow.
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October 19, 1994: In a “Schnittke at 60” concert, Concerto for Three for violin, viola, cello, strings, and piano by Alfred Schnittke (59) is performed for the first time, in Moscow. Also premiered is Schnittke’s Minuet for violin, viola, and cello.
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October 30, 1994: Three Choruses by Alfred Schnittke (59) to words from the Russian Orthodox prayer book are performed for the first time, in Stockholm.
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November 6, 1994: Symphonic Prelude for orchestra by Alfred Schnittke (59) is performed for the first time, in Hamburg.
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November 10, 1994: Symphony no.8 by Alfred Schnittke (59) is performed for the first time, in Stockholm.
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November 11, 1994: Fünf Fragmente zu Bildern von Hieronymus Bosch for tenor, violin, trombone, harpsichord, timpani, and string orchestra by Alfred Schnittke (59) to words of Reuser (tr. Droysen) is performed for the first time, in the Barbican Center, London.
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November 17, 1994: Sonata for cello and piano no.2 by Alfred Schnittke (59) is performed for the first time, in the Barbican Center, London.
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May 26, 1995: Gesualdo, an opera by Alfred Schnittke (60) to words of Bletschacher, is performed for the first time, in the Vienna Staatsoper.
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June 22, 1995: Historia von D. Johann Faustein, an opera by Alfred Schnittke (60) to words of Morgener and the composer after Spies, is performed for the first time, in the Hamburg Staatsoper.
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August 16, 1995: Requiem der Versöhung for vocal soloists, chorus and orchestra is performed for the first time, in Stuttgart. Among the 13 composers contributing to the work are Luciano Berio (69), György Kurtág (69), Krzysztof Penderecki (61), Alfred Schnittke (60), John Harbison (56), and Wolfgang Rihm (43).
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September 23, 1995: For Liverpool for orchestra by Alfred Schnittke (60) is performed for the first time, in Philharmonic Hall, Liverpool.
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December 11, 1995: Agnus Dei for two sopranos, female chorus, and chamber orchestra by Alfred Schnittke (61) is performed for the first time, in Oslo.
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March 14, 1996: Piano Sonata no.3 by Alfred Schnittke (61) is performed for the first time, in Tel Aviv.
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July 4, 1998: Alfred Schnittke (63) suffers a fifth stroke, in Hamburg.
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August 10, 1998: Thousands attend the funeral of Alfred Schnittke in Moscow.  His mortal remains are laid to rest in Novodevichy Cemetery.
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October 23, 1999: A Fugue for solo violin by Alfred Schnittke (†1) is performed for the first time, in New York, 46 years after it was composed.
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January 13, 2001: The first three movements of a Cantata for counter-tenor and chamber orchestra by Alfred Schnittke (†2) to words of Brant, Brueghel, and Böhme, is performed for the first time, in London.
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March 9, 2003: Sonata 1955 for violin and piano by Alfred Schnittke (†4) is performed for the first time, in London 48 years after it was composed.
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October 12, 2009: Three Poems of Victor Schnittke for tenor and piano by Alfred Schnittke (†11), is performed for the first time, in Hamburg.