Music societies

Music societies. Associations whose purpose was to provide a strong civic base for musical performance and development began appearing in Ukraine in the 19th century. The first such formations were the Saint Cecilia Music Society (1826) and the Society for the Advancement of Music (1838) in Lviv, which were created through the efforts of Franz Xaver Mozart; and the Torban society, which was active in Lviv and other Galician centers in 1869–71. In the 1890s a series of Boian music and song societies were established in Western Ukraine, which created the Union of Song and Music Societies in 1903. The union was renamed the Lysenko Music Society in Lviv in 1907. It played a vital role in Western Ukrainian musical life until it was dissolved in 1939. In Russian-ruled Ukraine the most active civic musical association was the Russian Music Society, which formed branches in Kyiv (1863), Kharkiv (1871), and Odesa (1884) and sponsored music schools. After the Revolution of 1917 the most active Ukrainian music association was the Leontovych Music Society. Formed in 1922, the group was active until 1928, when it was supplanted by the All-Ukrainian Society of Revolutionary Musicians, which in turn became Proletmuz in 1931 and the Union of Composers of Ukraine in 1932. It was not until 1959, with the formation of the Music Society of the Ukrainian SSR, that a music association with a significant civic base again existed in Ukraine.

Wasyl Wytwycky

[This article originally appeared in the Encyclopedia of Ukraine, vol. 3 (1993).]

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