Section 5: Lingering Echoes in the Eastern Bloc
The Fourth and Fifth Symphonies of Dmitri Shostakovich were written less than two years apart, but bear two incredibly different structures and tonal palettes. The former was shelved for decades and the latter was released to worldwide praise. The purpose of this paper is to investigate the unique circumstances that led to the two disparate fates of these pieces of music. It will investigate the political climate of the Soviet Union in the 1930s and the musical influences which affected Shostakovich and his oeuvre, speculating the purposes behind Shostakovich's change in approach between symphonies over the course of 1936 and 1937.