Music: Family Portrait

Though he is the most talked about of all contemporary composers, the real Dmitri Shostakovich has long been as mysterious as a Kremlin state secret. Now the secret is out.

It was revealed not in Leningrad but in Philadelphia, where a pleasant, grey-haired old lady named Nadejda Galli-Shohat had been living obscurely, after teaching physics at the University of Michigan, Bryn Mawr and Mount Holyoke. A U.S. resident since 1923, Nadejda Galli-Shohat, though she had never said much about it, is Shostakovich's aunt.

Assiduously pumped by a Russian-born pianist and writer, Victor Ilyich Seroff, Aunt Nadejda tells all. The result, Shostakovich's first full-length...

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