Paliashvili, Zakhari (Petrovich)

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Paliashvili, Zakhari (Petrovich)

Paliashvili, Zakhari (Petrovich), significant Georgian composer and pedagogue; b. Kutaisi, Aug. 16, 1871; d. Tiflis, Oct. 6, 1933. His father was a singer and his siblings were active in Georgian music. He studied with his older brother Ivan, and later, in 1887, he went to Tiflis, where he joined a Georgian national chorus. He also studied horn with Mosko (1891–95) and theory with Klenovsky (1895–99) at the music school there, then took a course with Taneyev at the Moscow Cons. (1900–03). Returning to Tiflis (1903), he assisted in the founding of the Georgian Phil. Soc. (1905) and directed its music school (1908–17). He publ. 2 collections of folk songs with native harmonies in 5 Georgian dialects under the pseudonym Palia (1910). Following the revolution, he became affiliated with the Tiflis Cons. (1917; prof., 1919; director, 1919; 1923; 1929–32). He was one of the founders of the nationalistic school of Georgian music, and, with Arakishvili and Balanchivadze, incorporated native elements into established musical formulas. Their operas were the first to use the Georgian language. His own opera Abesalom and Eteri (1919) was based upon a Georgian epic. He was awarded many honors during his life, including that of being made a National Artist of Georgia (1925). The Tbilisi opera house was named for him (1937), as was the Georgian State Prize (1971).


dramatic: Opera: Abesalom and Eteri (Tiflis, Feb. 21, 1919); Daisi (Twilight; Tiflis, Dec. 19, 1923); Latavra (Tiflis, March 16, 1928). other:Georgian Suite for Orch. (1928); choruses; many songs for Voice and Piano.


S. Kashmadze, Z. P. (Tbilisi, 1948); V. Donadze, Z. P. (Moscow, 1958; 2nd ed., 1971); S. Aslanishvili, The Road to “Abesalom” (Tbilisi, 1971); A. Tsulukidze, Z. P. (Tbilisi, 1971); P. Khuchua, Z. P. (Tbilisi, 1974).

—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire