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PHILHARMONICA. International Music Journal
Reference:

Prometheus by S.I. Taneyev and A.N. Scriabin: Stylistic parallels in the interpretation of the mythosymbolic image

Tereshchenko Vladimir Petrovich

PhD in Art History

Associate Professor at the Department of Conducting ofSaratov State Conservatoire

410012, Russia, Saratovskaya oblast', g. Saratov, prosp. im. Kirova S.M, 1

tereshchenko@mail.ru
Other publications by this author
 

 

DOI:

10.7256/2453-613X.2023.3.40831

EDN:

STMXMG

Received:

25-05-2023


Published:

21-08-2023


Abstract: Two chronologically close musical interpretations of the myth of the ancient titan Prometheus are considered as the subject of the study: the symphonic poem by A.N. Scriabin and the chorus by S.I. Taneyev from the cycle "Twelve Choirs for Mixed Voices to the poems of Ya.P. Polonsky". The article discusses the specifics of the interpretation of Prometheus, one of the central symbols of European culture. It is noted that over its long history, the content of the Prometheus myth has been interpreted in a wide range from a rebel who goes to self-sacrifice for humanity, to an inspired artist-creator who revealed the benefits of culture to people; from the holy great martyr and prophet of the true God, to the leader of the revolutionary masses of the people. As a result of the analysis, it is concluded that the central motive in Taneyev's work is the vocation of the artist, who goes to self-sacrifice against the forces of evil and ignorance. In Scriabin, Prometheus is interpreted as the active creative energy of the Universe, entering into a struggle with matter and transforming it. The analysis also reveals a number of stylistic parallels in the legacy of the two composers, such as philosophical conceptuality, monumentality of the idea and its implementation, striving for the transformation of a person through art, rational foundations of creativity, orientation to Western European art samples. As opposite stylistic features, the composers belong to different poles of protectiveness and innovation in art, and different approaches to the use of the literary word are noted. The influence of innovative insights of composers on the development of musical art of the XX century is emphasized.


Keywords:

Taneyev, Scriabin, Prometheus, myth, Choral cycle, Symphonic Poem, Symbol, Interpretation, Polonsky, The Silver Age

This article is automatically translated. You can find original text of the article here.

The Russian culture of the beginning of the XX century, which later received the name "Silver Age", is surprisingly rich and diverse in artistic achievements, it is saturated with an intensive search for new ideas and creative methods of art. In the turbulent picture of the musical life of those years, the major figures of S.I. Taneyev and A.N. Scriabin stand out, personalities extremely opposite and at the same time surprisingly attracted.

The two composers were connected by a rather warm relationship between a teacher and a student, as it is known, Scriabin studied music and theoretical disciplines at Taneyev's conservatory. Later, Taneyev closely followed the new compositions of his student, studied them, attended all the high-profile premieres. The paradox of their relationship lies in the combination of deep human sympathy with an almost complete rejection of each other's compositional creativity, at least outwardly declared. Here is how L.L. Sabaneev, the author of the memoirs, who knew and communicated with each of the composers, characterized their relationship: "Of all these major musicians, he [Scriabin] loved Taneyev the most, not as a composer – in this respect he could not stand him - but as a person and a person. The positive and rationalistic Taneyev was infinitely far from Scriabin's fantasies, they caused him a smile in good moments, annoyance and even disgust in bad moments" [11, p. 86]. This mutual perception of creativity is not surprising, the ideological and aesthetic vectors of the two composers were so far and divergent.

The personalities of the two geniuses personified the opposite poles of the creative quest of that time. On the one hand, it is protectiveness, that is, a conscious desire to prolong the established traditions, on the other hand, innovation, as the generation of completely new trends in musical art, noticeably ahead of their time in the historical perspective. Taneyev's protection was due to his conscious pilgrimage to the past, his desire to imbue himself with the highest examples of European musical culture of past eras, connecting them with the origins of the Russian national melos. Paradoxically, such a creative attitude of the composer eventually became the field of his innovative insights, and in the future became a powerful impetus for the development of musical art throughout the XX century. "Indeed," T. Levaya notes, "Taneyev's foresight was noticeably ahead of its time. Historicism of thinking, rational attitude to the creative process, the binding force of contrapuntal forms – something that only by the 1910s – 1920s became a phenomenon of a general cultural scale, characterized his activity since the 80s of the last century" [8, p. 90].

Scriabin, on the contrary, followed an extremely radical vector in his creative search. His music, devoid of any look into the past, is characterized by a powerful tectonic shift of aesthetic guidelines, an intensive search for a new language of art, a conscious break with tradition, a bold and sometimes shocking experiment.

Researchers have repeatedly had the idea to compare these two key figures of the era. One of the first such parallels was drawn by A.V. Lunacharsky (1925), the author resorts to comparing the creative aspirations of the two composers through the prism of the ideology of the young Soviet state. Sabaneev also takes the comparative path, at first glance it is difficult not to agree with his thought: "these two musicians could be a good example of the complete opposite of ideals, psychology, methods of life, and aspirations" [12, p. 90]. At the same time, despite all the opposites, each of them acted as a guide and creative embodiment of the ideas of their cultural and historical epoch.

Noteworthy is the almost simultaneous appeal of two composers to the same plot – the myth of Prometheus. The creation of S.I. Taneyev's monumental choral cycle Twelve a cappella Choirs for Mixed Voices to the words of Y.P. Polonsky dates back to 1909, in which the choir No. 8 "Prometheus" completes the second notebook and is at the point of the golden section, being the culmination of the cycle. In 1910, the last of Scriabin's major works was created the symphonic poem "Prometheus", also called the "Poem of Fire", which was the quintessence of the composer's innovative intentions and became, in the words of T. Lev, "a kind of emblem of the creative quest of the XX century" [7, p. 29].

The myth of Prometheus is one of the key meaning–forming plots of European culture, running through the thread from antiquity to modernity. With the change of epochs, socio-historical factors, individual creative intentions, its symbolic and ideological and philosophical interpretation changed. Already since antiquity, this plot has traditionally been endowed with a number of symbolic meanings, so in the tragedy of Aeschylus "Prometheus Chained", the interpretation of Prometheus as the discoverer of all cultural goods that made possible the development of human civilization was added to the motive of the abduction of fire. In Boccaccio, Prometheus becomes a symbol of science and wisdom, creation and development. The image of the God-fighter and liberator of people in the literature of Modern and modern times was sometimes endowed with the features of the Nietzschean superman, then acquired a hidden revolutionary subtext.

One of the common stylistic foundations of Taneyev and Scriabin's creativity – the philosophical conceptuality of creativity – was fully realized in the musical interpretation of the myth of Prometheus. Taneyev's musical heritage is interpreted as a special kind of philosophizing: "The auditory thinking of the Russian composer S.I. Taneyev <...> opens the boundaries of the sensual representation of art and rises to philosophical generalization. Taneyev poses and solves the problems of the world order and the meaning of human existence in the world" [1, p. 2]. At the center of Taneyev's musical and philosophical concept are moral and ethical problems in their Christian artistic interpretation.

In the interpretation of the poetic primary source of the chorus – Polonsky's poem, its Christian context should be noted. Considering this symbol, Losev, on the one hand, rightly notes that "Prometheus could not have been popular in Christian medieval literature in any way, because Prometheus as the creator of people had his powerful competitor in the Christian God, and Prometheus as a sufferer for people had his powerful competitor in Christ here" [9, p. 207]. At the same time, Losev comes to the conclusion that "Prometheus could really be considered as a symbol of divine providence, which manifested itself in the creation of people and in giving them a cultural life. The ancient Prometheus is only a kind of foreshadowing or prophecy about the true creator of people and their redeemer" [9, p. 208].

This symbolic context of Prometheus, as a hero going to free self-sacrifice for the love of humanity, is read in the final stanza of Polonsky's poem:

And what then, gods!

What will thunder do

With the immortality of the spirit,

With heavenly fire?

After all, what I created

With my love,

Stronger than iron

Claws and chains!!.

Losev notes that in Russian poetry of the XIX century, "Prometheus was interpreted by us as a symbol of spiritual freedom, light and justice. <...> Prometheus also acted as the founder and forerunner of artistic creativity, which also has a close relationship to the freedom of the spirit" [9, p. 233]. Polonsky's poem is also in this context, we will also emphasize two more important symbolic plans: we will designate the first as the artist and society, the moral responsibility of the creator to people, his role as the discoverer of truth, faith in the saving power of reason and art. All this is one of the key motives of Taneyev's creativity. The second important subtext of the chorus is the relationship between society and cruel despotic power, the role of the artist as a defender against arbitrariness and tyranny, his ability to sacrifice himself.

What Taneyev and Scriabin have in common is the aspiration of their creativity to transform a person through art. In Scriabin, this aspiration reaches the utopian idea of a "Mystery" – a grandiose quasi-liturgical action in which a spiritually transformative act of all mankind would take place. For Taneyev, the transformative power of art and the messianic role of the creator acts as a through line of creativity and is realized with special force in cantatas. The unifying idea of spiritual transformation determines the common vector of the dramaturgy of many works by both composers. In its most general form, it can be described as a movement from darkness to light. In Scriabin, it is expressed as the aspiration of the flight of the "Spirit playing" to ecstasy, in Taneyev – as purification through suffering and the acquisition of the highest moral foundations of humanity.

The system of Scriabin's philosophical views was formed under the influence of a number of thinkers, including I. Fichte, F. Schelling, A. Schopenhauer, F. Nietzsche. Among the Russian thinkers, the composer was influenced by the ideas of S.N. Trubetskoy, V.I. Ivanov, the theosophical teaching of E.P. Blavatsky. Such a list of landmarks generally corresponded to the cultural environment of symbolism that developed at the beginning of the XX century. According to Sabaneyev's memoirs, Scriabin was perceived by his contemporaries as "a man who found new ways in music, dreaming of combining music with philosophy" [7, p. 19].

In the myth-making writings of the Symbolists (Bryusov, Vyach. Ivanov) through the image of Prometheus, the mythologeme of fire was revealed. This motif is one of the end–to-end in Scriabin's work (the poem "To the Flame", "Dark Lights"). Scriabin's conception and interpretation of the image of Prometheus was influenced by his fascination with Blavatsky's theosophical teaching and, above all, her "Secret Doctrine". Scriabin was fascinated by the ambivalent interpretation of the image of Prometheus: both God and Satan, good and evil are manifested in him at the same time: "There is neither Devil nor Evil outside of human creation. Evil is a necessity in the manifested universe and one of its foundations. It is necessary for progress and for evolution, just as night is necessary for the manifestation of day, and death for life" [4, p. 451]. As T. Levaya notes, "Scriabin was carried away as a demonic hypostasis of his hero (his statement is known: "Satan is the yeast of the universe"), and his light—bearing mission" [7, p. 24]. Blavatsky interprets Lucifer in accordance with the etymology of the name as the bearer of light (lux, fero): "the one whom the entire priesthood of all dogmatic religions, mainly Christian, points to as Satan, the enemy of God, is in fact the highest divine Spirit – Occult Wisdom on Earth" [4. p. 438]. The authorized program of Scriabin's poem quite definitely reveals its symbolic meaning: Prometheus is "the active energy of the Universe, the creative principle, it is fire, light, life, struggle, effort, thought. The first manifestation of it is longing, thirst for life; in this longing, first of all, the polarity of spirit and matter is revealed, the creative impulse generates resistance, inertia – materialization, subsequently – the immobility of fixed forms. In the future, he enters into a struggle with this matter, this facet set by himself. And having overcome it, he returns to the state of initial rest" [8, p. 23]. Thus, the Scriabin concept of the myth, while retaining some motives similar to the traditional interpretation, turns out to be largely original.

Another important feature of both composers logically follows from the philosophical orientation of creativity – the leading importance of the rational foundations of their creativity. For Taneyev, the rational method was decisive, which was expressed at all levels of the compositional process. Here is how the composer himself described his actions in case of any difficulty: "... I do not interrupt work, but continue to work on the same material, extracting from it those combinations that it is able to give <...> among the written, you will meet, maybe, two or three combinations that will immediately give direction to thoughts and immediately resolve the difficulty encountered ..." [13, p. 181].

Regarding Scriabin 's rational approach , we will refer to his words in Sabaneyev 's retelling: "I always admit that mathematics should play a big role in composition. I sometimes have a whole calculation when composing, a calculation of the form, Alexander Nikolaevich once told me. And calculation of the modulation plan. It should not be random, geometric, otherwise there will be no crystal shape" [11, p. 123]. In achieving the architectonic harmony of a musical work, both composers use similar methods: counterpoint, reliance on cross-cutting themes, a verified tonal plan.

The embodiment of ideas that are large-scale in their philosophical problems organically requires their equally large-scale creative realization in musical canvases. This tendency can manifest itself both in the grandiosity of the cast ("Divine Poem", "Poem of Ecstasy", "Poem of Fire"), considerable length (opera trilogy "Oresteia"), the complexity of compositional writing. The attraction to the grandiosity of the monumentality of musical ideas can be distinguished in a common feature for Taneyev and Scriabin. The scale of imagery and musical embodiment is manifested in Taneyev not only in cantatas, which is more organic to their genre nature, but also especially clearly in the genre of the a cappella choir. Taneyev significantly enriched the texture and expressive possibilities of the choir and reached an unprecedented artistic height. The cycle of Twelve Choirs to the words of Y.P. Polonsky was called by Asafyev "the highest achievement of the classical style of the Russian secular choral culture of the pre-revolutionary era" [2, p. 132]. Indeed, in terms of the complexity of musical expression and the depth of philosophical content, the genre of the a cappella choir on a secular text was elevated by Taneyev to the level of symphonic thinking. According to S.M. Slonimsky's apt remark, "Taneyev, in fact, was the first to give the form of choirs a symphonic, allegorical meaning – that is, for him every major a cappella choir is equivalent to a symphonic poem" [15, p. 123]. The Prometheus Choir is the largest and most complex musical canvas of the entire opus in terms of compositional technique.

A common stylistic feature of both Taneyev and Scriabin can be identified as a pronounced orientation towards Western European samples of musical art. Scriabin, more than any other Russian composer, gravitated towards Western Romantics - first to Chopin, then to Liszt and Wagner. In the general orientation of Scriabin to European musical culture and the absence of a folklore element, in general, the desire for universality, universalism of art was manifested. Taneyev's appeal to the universal principles of pan-European musical thinking was realized primarily in polyphonic technique, as well as in a general orientation towards classical samples. Taneyev stated: "Melodic and harmonic elements are subject to the influence of time, nationality, individuality of the composer. But the forms of imitation, canonical and complex counterpoint, both applied and possible, are eternal, independent of any conditions" [14, p. 5]. As you know, the composer declared the need to fill in the missed stage of the polyphonic development of the domestic national melos as a historically necessary link in the musical culture of European countries.

The synthesis of music and literary words was realized somewhat differently in the works of Taneyev and Scriabin. All of Taneyev's instrumental music is alien to literal programming and belongs rather to the sphere of so-called "pure art". In this respect, Taneyev was influenced by the aesthetic ideas of one of the outstanding music critics of his time – G. Laroche. At the same time, the connection of music with the literary word was most vividly manifested by Taneyev in the field of vocal and choral genres: cantatas and romances. Scriabin, unlike Taneyev, practically did not address the vocally voiced word with the exception of two romances and the finale of the First Symphony, relating to the early period of creativity. "Clearly gravitating towards the word, but at the same time being afraid, apparently, of its coarsening concreteness, the composer eventually preferred an unvoiced, programmatic version of literary texts" [7, p. 45]. Programming was manifested in Scriabin through the titles of works, prose and poetic comments on them, detailed performance remarks, clearly going beyond the scope of applied meaning.

Prometheus is one of two (along with Symphony No. 1) works by Scriabin in which the chorus sounds. The chorus part, presented in the form of a harmonic pedal, vocalized into the syllables "e, a, o, ho" at first glance has a rather coloristic function, but there is also an esoteric meaningful interpretation of this text. K. Baras connects the sung vowels with the "esoteric seven–voiced word Oeaohoo - a symbol of "Six in one", Father-Mother The gods or the sevenfold root, the driving force of the eternal cosmic movement" [3, p. 110].

Taneyev's choir is always a carrier of the poetic word, while the key interest for analysis is the interaction of verbal and musical content. All episodes of Prometheus are divided into two figurative plans based on chordal (chorale) texture and polyphonic (triple fugue, fugato, imitation).

It is characteristic that all the chorale episodes are connected with the image of Prometheus and his narration in the first person: "I walked under the rocks...", "The earthly world, I know, has been recreated...", "Let me fall in the struggle!", "My image will shine brighter...", and the collective image of the gods, their rage in response to the crime of Prometheus and the image of the pursuing raven were reflected in polyphonic forms – a fugue and two fugatos. Thus, by means of a musical texture, two opposing forces are compared: a free creative personality, represented in a kind of choral recitative, and a cumulative image of a punishing force, musically embodied by means of polyphony. Of particular interest is the second section of the chorus – a triple fugue with joint exposure of themes. According to L. Korabelnikova, this is "one of the most complex and polyphonically saturated places in Taneyev choirs and in Russian choral literature in general" [6, p. 213]. Three themes sound simultaneously, each with its own text. At the same time, a paradox arises between the composer's usual insistence on the aesthetic merits of a poetic word and the impossibility for the listener to perceive it in an over-saturated polyphonic texture. Here we see one of Taneyev's rare cases when the choir acquires a special coloristic sound. In our opinion, the composer deliberately levels the fragments of the poetic text associated with the plot of the myth. Here, the musical concretization of individual details and characters is insignificant for him, all this is just a generalized image of cruel retribution.

Taneyev's Prometheus Choir, through virtuoso mastery of polyphonic technique, subtle use of harmonic choral colors and mastery of compositional drama, is a wonderful musical embodiment of the symbolic content of the myth embedded in the poems of Ya. Polonsky. Its key theme is the high destiny of the artist, who defends the values of creative creativity over the forces of evil and ignorance at the cost of self–sacrifice.

Taneyev and Scriabin are two unique figures of Russian music in their own way. The highest point of their creative path and almost simultaneous departure came at a turning point in the cultural and historical development of Russia. Each of the composers in his own way influenced the further paths of musical art. It can be argued that Taneyev was at the forefront of the new polyphonic renaissance of the XX century. The basis of his compositional style – a rational approach to the creative process based on polyphony – subsequently became the generally accepted norm of musical thinking. With his scientific works and his entire compositional legacy, Taneyev actually anticipated the fundamental change of the aesthetic paradigm from the Romanticism of the XIX century to the rational, constructive foundations of creativity in the XX century, filled with the ideas of neoclassicism. In turn, Scriabin also acted as the finisher of the romantic era, while anticipating the avant-garde concept of art of the XX century. With the creators of the avant-garde, Scriabin brings together the study of the artistic limit of art. His later opuses, especially The Poem of Fire, as well as the idea of The Mystery, are marked by an extreme intensification of innovative search, purposeful overcoming of any influences and traditions. Thus, the legacy of two geniuses of the Silver Age – Taneyev and Scriabin – became a kind of reference point for creative searches of the entire XX century.

References
1. Aminova, G.U. (1998). The model of the world in the works of S.I. Taneyev. Cand. diss. Krasnoyarsk.
2. Asafyev, B.V. (1979). Russian music: the XIX and the beginning of the XX century. L.: Music.
3. Baras, K.V. (1995). Esoterica "Prometheus" In Nizhny Novgorod Scriabin almanac (pp. 100-117). Nizhny Novgorod: Publishing house "Nizhny Novgorod Fair".
4. Blavatskya, E.P. (2004). Secret Doctrine. Volume 2. Moscow: Eksmo.
5. Belza, I.F. (1982). Alexander Nikolaevich Scriabin. M.: Music.
6. Korabelnikova, L.Z. (1986). Creativity of S. I. Taneev: Historical and stylistic research. Moscow: Music.
7. Levaya, T.N. (1997). A.N. Scriabin In History of Russian music: In 10 Vols. – Vol. 10 A: The end of the XIX – beginning of the XX century (pp. 5-68). Moscow: Music.
8. Levaya, T.N. (1991). Russian music of the beginning of the XX century in the artistic context of the epoch. Moscow: Music. 166 p.
9. Losev, A.F. (1995). The problem of symbol and realistic art. 2nd ed., ispr. Moscow: Iskusstvo.
10. Lunacharsky, A.V. (1971). Taneev and Scriabin In In the world of music. Moscow: Soviet composer.
11. Sabaneev, L. L. (2000). Memories of Scriabin. Moscow: Classics-XXI.
12. Sabaneev, L.L. (2003). Memories of Taneyev. Moscow: Classics-XXI.
13. Taneev, S.I. (1947). Thoughts about his own creative work In In memory of S.I. Taneev (pp. 179-182). Moscow: Muzgiz.
14. Taneev, S.I. (1959). Movable counterpoint of strict writing. Moscow: Muzgiz.
15. Tereshchenko, V.P. (2015). About Taneyev's choral work and not only In E.B. Dolinskaya (Ed.) Sergey Slonimsky is an interlocutor. 2nd. ed. (pp. 117-135). St. Petersburg: Composer St. Petersburg.

First Peer Review

Peer reviewers' evaluations remain confidential and are not disclosed to the public. Only external reviews, authorized for publication by the article's author(s), are made public. Typically, these final reviews are conducted after the manuscript's revision. Adhering to our double-blind review policy, the reviewer's identity is kept confidential.
The list of publisher reviewers can be found here.

The subject of the research in the article is the phenomenon of stylistic parallels in the interpretation of the "mythosymbolic" image of Prometheus by outstanding Russian composers (S.I. Taneev and A.N. Scriabin). Based on empirical material, the author reveals the attitude of composers to each other's work, the distinctive features of their musical language and compositional thinking, various approaches to compositional innovation and the interpretation of the "mythosymbolic" image of Prometheus in famous works. Rightly noting the unique individual features of the authors' credos and creative styles of the composers, nevertheless, the author focuses the reader's attention on the stylistic parallels of their reading of the central mythical image of the epoch (Prometheus). The author's thesis looks quite justified that the warm relations between teacher and student influenced one of the essential common stylistic foundations of Taneyev and Scriabin's work the philosophical conceptuality of creativity, which "was fully realized in the musical interpretation of the myth of Prometheus." Revealing the characteristic features of the interpretation of the image of Prometheus (romantic revolutionary, mission artist) characteristic of the pre-revolutionary era, the author notes that the basis of the musical and philosophical concept of this image of Taneyev is moral and ethical problems in their Christian artistic interpretation, while Scriabin was more influenced by the esotericism of E.P. Blavatsky. Nevertheless, what Taneyev and Scriabin have in common, as the author rightly notes, "is the aspiration of their creativity to transform a person through art" ("The unifying idea of spiritual transformation determines the common vector of the dramaturgy of many works by both composers"). The philosophical conceptuality of creativity, in the author's opinion, determined another important common feature of composers "the leading importance of the rational foundations of their work." Also, the author considers a "pronounced orientation towards Western European samples of musical art" to be a common stylistic feature of composers, which is refracted through the prism of intonational originality and uniqueness of their musical thinking. As the author notes in the final conclusions, each of the composers brought his own unique contribution to the musical art: "Taneev stood at the forefront of the new polyphonic renaissance," and Scriabin anticipates the avant-garde of the XX century. However, we can agree with the author that both of them act as a "stylistic bridge" between the musical eras of the XIX and XX centuries: "the legacy of two geniuses of the Silver Age ... became a kind of starting point for the creative searches of the entire XX century." Thus, the author's opinions expressed are fully justified and fully disclose the subject of the study. The research methodology is based on a comparative method, supported by the techniques of historical and bibliographic comparisons and musical and stylistic analysis. The methods are relevant to the tasks solved by the author, the logic of the sequence of solutions of which is dictated by the need to achieve the goal of revealing and substantiating stylistic parallels in the interpretation of S.I. Taneev and A.N. Scriabin of the mythosymbolic image of Prometheus. The relevance of articulating the theme of searching for stylistic parallels in the works of S.I. Taneev and A.N. Scriabin is due to the need to clarify the characteristics of the style of the transitional era from late Romanticism to the avant-garde. In particular, the author appropriately emphasized, following A.V. Lunacharsky, that the symbolism of the mythical image of Prometheus reflects the specific romantic halo of a romantic revolutionary, a mission artist, which characterizes the social expectations of the creative intelligentsia from the change of centuries. The scientific novelty of the presented work consists in the author's selection and analysis of empirical material, in the logic of revealing the research program and the sequence of the author's argumentation of the presence of stylistic parallels in the interpretation of the mythosymbolic image of Prometheus by S.I. Taneev and A.N. Scriabin. The author's style is characterized by a synthesis of scientific (the logic of the implementation of the research program) and scientific and educational (clarity and simplicity of language) methods of presentation of the material, which gives the article additional value. The structure of the article is subordinated to the logic of presenting the results of scientific research. There are separate typos in the content of the text (for example: "... the simultaneous appeal of the spirit of the composers ...", "... Taneyev's legacy is understood as a special kind of philosophizing ...", "... the mastery of compositional drama presents itself ..."), as well as unnecessary spaces in some places before punctuation marks. Of course, the text requires additional proofreading. The bibliography, taking into account the empirical nature of the argumentation presented by the author, fully reveals the subject area of the study, although the author's disregard for the method of including research results in the actual context of current scientific discussions (there is no domestic and foreign scientific literature over the past 5 years) significantly, although not critically, reduces the scientific significance of the publication. Paragraphs 4, 7, and 15 of the source descriptions need to be adjusted. The appeal to the opponents is exclusively complementary, but given the author's style of presentation of the material (synthesis of scientific and educational functions of the text), it can be considered sufficient to reveal the author's thought. The interest of the PHILHARMONICA readership. The International Music Journal is guaranteed access to the article, but the author should carefully proofread the text and make minor edits.

Second Peer Review

Peer reviewers' evaluations remain confidential and are not disclosed to the public. Only external reviews, authorized for publication by the article's author(s), are made public. Typically, these final reviews are conducted after the manuscript's revision. Adhering to our double-blind review policy, the reviewer's identity is kept confidential.
The list of publisher reviewers can be found here.

The subject of the research of the article "Prometheus" by S.I. Taneev and A.N. Scriabin: stylistic parallels in the interpretation of the mythosymbolic image" is the musical creativity of Russian composers. The author seeks to understand the paradox of creative and human relationships between musicians who were united by one era, personal friendship, common creative motives, but were separated by artistic ones. The research methodology used by the author of the article is a comparative analysis of the life and work of composers, the study of their works in the context of the epoch and musical hermeneutics as an interpretation of the meanings and content of music. The relevance of the research is due to the importance of the figures of S.I. Taneev and A.N. Scriabin not only for Russian symphonic music, but also for the world process of musical creative searches. The scientific novelty of the article lies in the consistent comparison of the creative techniques of the two composers and the identification of not only the differences in their "musical handwriting", but also the points of intersection. The style of the article is typical for scientific publications in the field of humanitarian studies, it combines the clarity of the formulations of key theses and their logically consistent argumentation. The structure and content of the work does not have an author's division in the form of subheadings, however, this does not interfere with a logical consistent presentation. The author begins the consideration of the relationship between the composers with personal friendship. At the same time, their creative opposition is immediately stated: on the part of Taneyev, this is a conscious desire to prolong the established traditions, but also relying on it, rethinking musical classics, on the part of Scriabin, this is a fundamental innovation, the initiation of completely new trends in musical art, the rejection of any kind of look into the past. Next, the author proceeds to the theme of Prometheus, which is present in the works of both composers, and compares their music according to a number of parameters. The article notes an interesting temporal coincidence of the composers' appeal to the Greek myth of the thieves of fire. In 1909, S.I. Taneeva created the monumental choral cycle Twelve a cappella Choirs, in which the Prometheus Choir No. 8 is present. And almost at the same time in 1910, A.N. Scriabin wrote the symphonic poem "Prometheus". The author notes that in the musical interpretation of the myth of Prometheus, one of the common stylistic foundations of Taneyev and Scriabin's work was realized the interpretation of Prometheus as a symbol of spiritual freedom, light and justice. The author considers such moments common to the music of Taneyev and Scriabin as: the aspiration of their creativity to transform a person through art, the attraction to the grandiosity of monumental designs, a pronounced orientation towards Western European samples of musical art. Scriabin gravitated towards Western romantics (Chopin, Liszt, Wagner), while Taneyev gravitated towards the polyphonic technique of pan-European musical thinking. At the same time, the author points out the creative differences between the composers: the different attitude of Taneyev and Scriabin to the synthesis of music and literary words (Taneyev's love for choral forms of realization of poetic texts), Scriabin's almost complete lack of reference to the vocally voiced word. The bibliography includes references to 15 studies. The author's appeal to opponents is sufficiently present. He notes that the idea of comparing the works of Taneyev and Scriabin has already arisen more than once among researchers, among whom he names A.V. Lunacharsky, A.F. Losev, L. Korabelnikova, T. Levaya, etc. The article is written in understandable language, easy to read, and will be of interest to both professional researchers of Russian musical culture and fans of Taneyev and Scriabin's work, anyone interested in the history of music.