Safonov, Vasily (Ilyich)

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Safonov, Vasily (Ilyich) [ Vasily (Ilyich) Safonoff] (b Itsyursk, Caucasus, 1852; d Kislovodsk, 1918). Russ. pianist and conductor. Début St Petersburg 1880. Taught at St Petersburg Cons. 1881–5 and at Moscow Cons. 1885–1905 (dir. 1889–1905). Began career as cond. 1889. NY début 1904, cond. NYPO 1906–9. Dir., Nat. Cons., NY, 1906–9. London début with LSO 1906. Returned to Russia 1911. Notable advocate of Tchaikovsky's mus. First modern cond. to dispense with baton.