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Music and Dance


The music collection reflects the important role played by music in Russian and Soviet culture. It offers a wide range of recordings, printed scores, and books about music and musicians, including many that are difficult to obtain elsewhere. The collection is of interest to music specialists and performers.

The extensive recordings collection includes folk music from different ethnic groups and former Soviet republics, popular music and romances, and works from 19th and 20th-century Russian and Soviet composers. Alongside the classics are little known works by famous composers, as well as lesser known composers from the former Soviet republics. Recordings are predominantly on vinyl.

The music scores range from Agafonov to Shostakovich. The Soviet Union published many scores but print-runs were often small and few copies exported. The Society is fortunate to hold some rare items. As some of this music has not been recorded, the collection offers a unique opportunity to discover unknown gems - from operas and symphonic works to chamber and vocal pieces.

The book collection covers the history of Russian and Soviet music, theatre music, music criticism (Stasov, Asafiev and others), music dictionaries, musical education and theory, as well as biographies of composers and performers.

Campbell Creighton Bequest

The Campbell Creighton Bequest covers Soviet ballet, music and theatre. It includes a large collection of Soviet theatre and concert programmes, covering Bolshoi opera and ballet seasons, ballet and concert graduation finals, and cultural festivals. This eclectic and personal collection provides details of productions and casts, but also offers an insight into cultural life in Moscow in the 1960s-70s. Campbell Creighton (1913-1990) was born in Canada, came to England as a Rhodes scholar in the 1930s, and saw active service in World War II. A Marxist and journalist, from 1957 to 1965 he was General Secretary of the Society for Cultural Relations with the USSR (now the SCRSS). He moved to Moscow in 1967, staying for 23 years, where he was the Moscow correspondent for the Society's Anglo-Soviet Journal.


The small dance collection covers Russian and Soviet ballet and folk dance. It includes books on the history of dance, encyclopaedias, memoires and biographies, and is of interest to general readers and dance researchers.

The 150 titles that make up the collection form part of the loan collection and are predominantly in English. They are supplemented by a large photographic collection going back to the earliest days of Russian ballet (held in the photo library).


Music score: Shostakovich's Fragmenty iz Muzyki k Kinofilmu 'Molodaya Gvardiya', 1954 (SCRSS Library)


Related Links

SCRSS Online Catalogue


Galina Ulanova in Swan Lake, Kirov Ballet, Leningrad, 1947 (SCRSS Photo Library)