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 Muslim Magomayev

Born:   August 17 1942
Deceased:   October 25 2008



 Muslim Magometovich Magomayev was born on August 17, 1942 into an artistic family in Baku. His father was a stage designer (he perished at the frontline), his mother was a drama actress, and his grandfather was Muslim Magomayev, the well-known Azerbaijani composer, after whom the Azerbaijan Philharmonic Society was named.

Muslim finished a music school at the Baku conservatory, majoring in piano and composition, and then graduated from the Azerbaijan Conservatory majoring in singing. His first performance took place in Baku, Azerbaijan. He took the stage secretly from his family, who were against Muslim’s early performance.
The singer gained all-Union fame after his performance in the Kremlin Palace of Congresses at the final concert of the Azerbaijan Art Festival in 1962. His first solo concert took place in the Tchaikovsky Concert Hall on November 10, 1963.
In 1963 Muslim Magomayev became the soloist of the Azerbaijan Akhundov Opera and Ballet Theater, but did not leave the variety stage. In 1964-1965 he undertook training in La Scala Theatre in Milan. In 1966 and 1969 Muslim Magomayev was a great success with his tours in the famous Olympia Theatre in Paris. The director of Olympia Bruno Coquatrix suggested Magomayev sign a one-year contract, but the USSR Ministry of Culture declined the offer. Magomayev was even offered to become an illegal emigrant or a political refugee, but he refused.
In 1969 Magomayev won his first prizes at the festival in Sopot and in Cannes. In 1973 at the age of 31 he became the People’s Actor of the USSR.
Muslim Magomayev enjoyed enormous fame in the 1960s-1970s: huge stadiums, endless tours across all the Soviet Union, frequent performances on television. Records with his songs were released in big numbers. Until today lots of people in the former Soviet Union enjoy listening to Muslim Magomayev. The singer’s repertoire included over 600 songs. 
Muslim Magomayev died after a long illness at the age of 66 on October 25, 2008.

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