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Peter Gilmore as James Onedin and Anne Stallybrass as Anne Webster in the BBC series The Onedin LineWelcome to our website

The Onedin Line theme music: "Adagio" by Aram Khachaturian

The opening credits of the Onedin Line series features the beautiful music from the ballet "Spartacus" by Aram Khachaturian. Khachaturian made probably his best-selling disc in 1962 for Decca: it consisted once again of suites from Gayaneh and Spartacus, but this time in performances with the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, captured in sound of the highest quality. It was this recording which was used as the theme music for the television series The Onedin Line

Name: Aram Khachaturian
Date of Birth: 6 June 1903, Tiflis, Georgia, Russia
Date of Death: 1 May 1978, Moscow, Russia

Biography of Aram Khachaturian:

Aram Khachaturian was born in 1903, in Tiflis, Russian Empire. He was the fourth son in a modest Armenian family. His father was a book-binder and a craftsman; he noticed the son's musical talent and got him a used piano, but he did not have money for a music teacher. Khachaturian was self taught until the age of 19, when he moved to Moscow to join his brother, a theater director. He studied physics and mathematics at the Moscow University for one year before entering the Gnesin School of Music in 1922. At the entrance test he saw a cello and said, - "I want to learn to play this big violin". He studied cello under Mikhail Gnesin. He graduated with honors from the Gnesin School in 1929 and from the Moscow Conservatory in 1934, where he studied composition under 'Nikolai Miaskovsky'. Sergei Prokofiev promoted Khachaturian's music in Europe, and his piano trio and the First Piano Concerto (1936) has won him international acclaim.

His Ballet "Gayaneh" (1942), with the brilliant "Sabre Dance", became an international sensation. But his second ballet, "Spartacus", written in 1945, was not staged for 11 years. Khachaturian was among the Soviet artists and intellectuals affected by official attacks on culture under Joseph Stalin in 1940s and 50s. His music was denounced as being 'formalistic'. Khachaturian suffered from official attacks along with Sergei Prokofiev, Boris Pasternak, Anna Akhmatova and many other distinguished intellectuals in the Soviet Union. Only in December of 1956 "Spartacus" had it's premiere on the stage of Bolshoi Theater in Moscow, and soon it gained international success.

The "Adagio" from the ballet "Spartacus" and the "Sabre Dance" from the ballet "Gayaneh" became the signature themes of Khachaturian. He also wrote an acclaimed score for "Masquerade", a drama by Mikhail Lermontov. Khachaturian was a recipient of many Soviet and International awards. As professor of composition at the Moscow Conservatory he promoted innovative and inter-cultural approach to music education. He cherished his Armenian heritage. He also included in his compositions a taste of the world music and various oriental influences.

Death of a Great Musician
Aram Khachaturian died in Moscow in 1978 and was buried in Armenia.

Visit the official Aram Khachaturian website

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