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Nikita Koshkin

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Nikita Koshkin (born February 28, 1956) is a classical guitarist and composer born in Moscow. His early influences included Stravinsky, Shostakovich and Prokofiev, as well as rock music. As with those composers his music is characterised by rhythmic appeal, immediacy and wide range of colours, and well-thought-out dramatic content.

Koshkin first came to prominence with his suite The Prince’s Toys, completed in 1980 and first performed by the Czech-born guitarist Vladimir Mikulka. It depicts the fairytale world of a child in which his toys come to life and, eventually, abduct him to some other dimension. The suite incorporates numerous sound-effects on the guitar to paint images: the so-called ‘snare drum’ effect, for example, created by holding down crossed B and E (or low-E and A)strings with the left hand, to imitate the drums of toy soldiers. Other extended techniques include scraping the strings with the fingernails; a large variety of percussive effects; ‘playing’ the strings between the tuning heads and nut, similar to the 3rd bridge technique, or the knotted sections of the strings on the bridge; ‘hammer-ons’, where the left hand fingers suddenly depress the string against the fingerboard without the intervention of the right hand; and so on.

Koshkin’s most celebrated guitar work is Usher-Waltz, a piece inspired by the Edgar Allan Poe story The Fall of the House of Usher. Cast in a single movement, it is a motoric waltz whose careering harmonic progression around A minor threatens, and ultimately succeeds, in tearing the music apart.

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  • Fummi-San

    the big master

    1 Aug 2011 Reply
  • oldschoolbear

    the master

    16 Sep 2010 Reply
  • cryptoclassic

    Nikita Koshkin is easily one of the finest contemporary composers. His Princes Toys Suite is an exceptional extended work.

    4 Feb 2010 Reply
  • Netherese

    This is one of my favorite CG authors, along with the likes of Sor and Tarrega. I love the jazzy, dissonant sound in his pieces.

    25 Nov 2008 Reply
  • Acoustic-303

    Замечательный Гитарист. узнаю совсем недавно о существовании нашего русского первоклассного гитариста после просмотра видео John Williams The Seville Concert 1992 года (где тот играет Usher Waltz)... странно это всё =)

    15 May 2008 Reply

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