Defectors: Exit, con Brio

The Shostakoviches flee

"It is as if someone had returned to me a missing part of my body!" Cellist-Conductor Mstislav Rostropovich exclaimed in Washington. The Russian é migré maestro could be excused the hyperbole. Other Soviet figures have sought artistic freedom in the West, but few could match the poignant symbolism of last week's defection drama. In a stunning rebuff to Kremlin cultural politics, the son and grandson of the Soviet Union's most celebrated contemporary composer the late Dmitri Shostakovich, decided to join Rostropovich in exile and petition the U.S. State...

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