Music: Out of the Rut?

Ever since the stern party-line decrees of five years ago (TIME, Feb. 23, 1948), Soviet composers have been avoiding "formalism" and trying to write music that even committees of commissars could understand.* Now it looks as if the party line may be switching key again. In the journal Soviet Music, top-ranking Composer Aram (Sabre Dance) Khachaturian calls the system of having committees review and pass judgment on new music a disaster and adds, "Let time and the public judge." Excerpts:

" 'Monumental' works [have been] composed for choirs and grand orchestras—and with nothing in them! One had to put up with it...

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