Shostakovich and Stock

As Phillip Huscher includes in his program note, “Shostakovich composed most of his seventh symphony in Leningrad, his birthplace, during the siege of the city that ultimately took nearly a million lives — roughly one-third of its inhabitants — as a result of hunger, cold and air raids.”

On Aug. 22, 1942, less than six months after the world premiere, Frederick Stock led the Chicago Symphony Orchestra in Shostakovich’s Leningrad Symphony — “which has aroused more interest than any other symphonic work in decades” — in a special concert for the benefit of Russian war relief at the Ravinia Festival.

Read more: Shostakovich’s Leningrad Symphony in Chicago