Music: Precise Pitch

Owlish, talented little Dmitri Shostakovich, who intimately knows that a Russian composer must sing in tune with the Communist Party's harmonic scheme, last week gave faithful praise to the blower of the U.S.S.R.'s biggest pitch pipe: Joseph Stalin himself.

Wrote Shostakovich in the magazine Ogonek: "Many workers in the arts meet Stalin, and every one of them has been surprised by his immense understanding of art and the delicacy and depth of his wisdom and judgment." Stalin, he reported, had listened to many works entered in competition for a hymn of the Soviet Union, and "with surprising exactitude" put his finger on...

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