Text Box: Conductor autographs


Price: $150.00



Phone: 212-860-5541  *  Fax: 917-677-8247


Autographed quarto typed letter signed by the conductor, Moscow, October 10, 1960

The brilliant Russian conductor writes to RCA executive Allan Kayes about recording and the great success George London had in his nearly month long tour of Russia.  London was the first American to sing at the Bolshoi and his rendition of the role of Boris Godounov was considered a sensation there.  Offered with a vintage 8” x 10” photograph of Kondrashin with the “Hurok Attractions” stamp on the verso.

Moscow, October 10, ‘60

Dear Mr. Allan Kayes,

I am availing myself of the kindness of George London and I am sending you this letter through him.  Ninochka and I often speak of you and always hope that we shall soon again get to meet you.  We would like to have you as our guest.  Perhaps it will happen.  We wish to hope that conditions will improve and then business relations between American and our recording companies will be such as to permit the exchange of representatives.

George had an astounding success here.  Ninochka and I heard him in opera and in concert, and we are happy that he received the recognition of our audiences that he so well deserved.  One must say that our audiences are rather demanding, and to have a success like George’s is not the lot of every guest artist.  We hope that he will soon visit us again.

We often spoke of you with George.  It’s a very great pity that your wife was sick.  We hope that her health has improved, and if you have the chance to come to the USSR that she will come with you.

I think of you daily when I hear your records.  Once again, many thanks for them—they keep me very, very much in my work and give much joy to me and my friends who come to me especially to hear the music.

I do not know when I will be able once more to visit the USA.  In the last two years I was there three times.  But if I cannot come to see you soon, I would like to tell you our family considers you and your wife as sincere and faithful friends.

Forgive me for writing in Russian—there is no time to ask for help in translating since George is flying home tomorrow.

Once again, cordial greeting,

Nina and Kirill

The conductor (1914-1981) worked significantly with the Maly Theatre as conductor from 1936-1943, joining the Bolshoi in 1943 where he conducted until 1956.  Kondrashin was named Music Director of the Moscow Symphony Orchestra in 1960 a position he held until 1975.  He was also the conductor selected to lead the orchestra for the Van Cliburn Concert following his important win at the Tchaikovsky Competition in 1958.  The conductor defected to the West while on tour in 1978, where he became the permanent guest conductor of the Concertgebouw Orchestra.  He also worked extensively with the Vienna Philharmonic and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra.  He died of a heart attack in 1981. 

His work has been well preserved on RCA and Melodiya Records.

Perfect pair for display, rare letter and rare photograph!