Performance Group

The Dmitri Pokrovsky Ensemble was founded by Dmitri Pokrovsky (1944-1996) in 1973 in Moscow as a living laboratory for the study of Russian folk traditions. Pokrovsky’s goal was to preserve and transmit to a new generation of performers and audiences the vitality that he found in authentic village music, dance, theater, and religious rituals. From its base in Moscow, the Pokrovsky Ensemble traveled throughout rural Russia, documenting the traditions they encountered. The Pokrovsky Ensemble’s repertory has grown to encompass more than 1,000 songs, including medieval Russian village music, religious music of the country’s old and new faiths, and modern works of Russian composers. The ensemble wears traditional Russian village costumes and performs on ancient instruments, bringing the authentic folklore of Russia back to life.

The Dmitri Pokrovsky Ensemble has performed at venues including BAM, Tanglewood, Carnegie Hall, Sydney Opera, and the London Barbican, and has toured throughout North America, Europe, Japan, Australia, and the former USSR. The ensemble has collaborated with artists and ensembles including the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Birmingham Symphony, Paul Winter Consort, Peter Gabriel, Thomas Adès, and the Avanti! Chamber Orchestra.

The Ensemble’s recordings include Faces of Russia; Wild Field, a survey of Russian folk music released by the Real World label; Earthbeat, a collaboration with the Paul Winter Consort; Stravinsky’s Les Noces for Nonesuch Records; Night in Galicia; Mother Russia; and Alexander Raskatov’s Voices of Frozen Land, with the Netherlands Wind Ensemble.Dmitri Pokrovsky lectured at the Smithsonian Institute, Princeton University, and the Omega Institute, and was a visiting professor at Dartmouth College. He wrote numerous scores for films and was also an active musical director in Russian theater. In 1988, Mikhail Gorbachev honored Mr. Pokrovsky with the Government Award, the former Soviet Union’s highest recognition for artistic excellence.

(June 2013)

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