Churkin, Nikolay Nikolayevich
- Taisiya Shcherbakova
(b Dzhalal-Oglï, nr Tbilisi, Georgia, 9/May 21, 1869; d Minsk, Dec 27, 1964). Belarusian folklorist and composer. He completed his studies in composition with Ippolitov-Ivanov at the Tbilisi Music College (1892), and then worked as a music teacher in Baku and from 1903 in the north-west region of Russia (in the towns of Kovno, Vil′no and Mstislavl′). He headed amateur societies and choirs, and began his work as a folklorist. His first volume of 53 Belarusian songs was published in Vil′no in 1910. His opera Osvobozhdyonnïy trud (‘Emancipated Labour’) was written in Mstislavl′ in 1922 and was staged there by amateurs in the same year.
After 1935 Churkin lived permanently in Minsk and devoted himself to folklore. He recorded around 3000 Belarusian, Lithuanian, Polish, Georgian, Armenian and Azerbaidjani folksongs. These served as sources for many of his instrumental works – three sinfoniettas (1925, 1949...