Historicism and English style: Music school in Bolshaya Yakimanka gets landmark status

Historicism and English style: Music school in Bolshaya Yakimanka gets landmark status
The music school building in Bolshaya Yakimanka Street has come under state protection. Its students included the famous conductor Valery Khalilov. Only the outer appearance has survived to this day, while the interiors have been lost.

Built in 1906, the Glière children’s music school has been recognised as a regional cultural heritage landmark. The stone four-storey building with a basement and attic is located at 29 Bolshaya Yakimanka Street. Constructed in the style of historicism, the building has elements borrowed from English architecture – triangular pediments at the top and large twin windows.

“The façade of the building looks asymmetrical from Bolshaya Yakimanka Street due to the risalit, the section that juts out, adjoining a vehicular archway and crowned by a small turret. The second floor of the risalit features twin windows, and the attic floor is decorated with small multi-faceted framed triangles. The side facing 2nd Khvostov Pereulok is symmetrical with various sized windows on different floors. The windows on the basement and first floors are not big, whereas the upper floors have spacious rectangular ones. Decorative façade elements feature plaster- and brick-work,” said Head of Moscow’s Department of Cultural Heritage Alexei Yemelyanov.

Originally, the building housed the 2nd Moscow City-owned School, which gave way to a music school in 1937. Classes were suspended during the war period until 1944. The teachers included artists from the orchestra of the Bolshoi Theatre of the USSR, such as trumpeter Ivan Vasilevsky and flautist Vladimir Tsybin. In different years, the school taught many would-be famous people – conductors Viktor Yeliseyev and Valery Khalilov, composers Mikhail Bronner and Sergei Dmitriyev and singers Vyacheslav Dobrynin and Mikhail Shufutinsky.

In 1982, a museum room opened there dedicated to Soviet composer Reinhold Glière. In 1988, the building’s pattern was changed completely on all but the third floor, which still houses the assembly hall designed by the building’s architect, Alexander Nikiforov.

Alexei Yemelyanov noted that the school is under reconstruction and that its original layout has been all but lost. Only one staircase has survived. The facades are now hidden under netting but, with their original structure and décor intact, they only need refurbishing. All the repair activities are supervised and coordinated by the Department of Cultural Heritage. From now on, demolishing the music school building or distorting its historical appearance is not permitted.

Work to refurbish and preserve monuments of architecture is ongoing in Moscow. The list of cultural heritage landmarks has been expanding on a regular basis. Within the past seven years alone, about 700 buildings made it on the protected list, of which 370 are identified as cultural heritage landmarks and 325 as federal and regional cultural heritage landmarks.

In August, the Bocharov family’s revenue house that was built in the early 20th century on Gogolevsky Boulevard became a regional cultural heritage landmark. This is a four-storey brick building designed by architect Lev Kekushev, a famous Russian master specialising in the modern style. 

Reinhold Glière was a Soviet musician, composer and conductor. He was born on 11 January 1875 in Kiev. In 1938, he was conferred the title of People’s Artist of the USSR. In 1946, 1948 and 1950, he won Stalin Prizes of the first degree. He is also renowned as the composer of the St Petersburg anthem. Glière died on 23 June 1956 in Moscow and was buried at Novodevichye Cemetery.