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National Music Day is celebrated in Azerbaijan

National Music Day is celebrated in Azerbaijan
The 10th Uzeyir Hajibeyli International Music Festival kicks off today

Music is an essential part of our life. We are very attached to music. This attachment starts from the very first moments of a human life. A newborn calms down listening to mother’s lullaby. Music accompanies joyful, proud, as well as sad moments of our lives. As we can see, music goes along with a person throughout his life.
 
National Music Day announced by Maestro Niyazi
 
All nations of the world has their own music culture. Music is an universal language that unites nations and provides their mutual understanding. Today is a day of music which is the best propagandist of culture. The proclamation of this day as a music day is not accidental. September 18 is the birthday of genius Azerbaijani composer Uzeyir Hajibeyli. This day is celebrated as the National Music Day in Azerbaijan. The tradition of celebrating the birthday of the great composer as a holiday was laid by Maestro Niyazi. Prominent composer and conductor Niyazi used to celebrate this day each year after Uzeyir Hajibeyli’s death. At the initiative of Maestro Niyazi, Uzeyir Hajibeyli’s birthday – September 18 was celebrated with special solemnity and ceremonies in our republic each year in the XX century. This tradition continues till nowadays.
 
Heydar Aliyev’s order and Uzeyir Music Day

The commemoration of the great composer at an amateur level gave rise to concern. Great protector of our culture, National Leader Heydar Aliyev awarded the Uzeyir Music Day celebrated at the initiative of unforgettable Niyazi the state status. Under the order of the Great Leader, September 18 became to be celebrated as the Uzeyir Music Day. This noble decision was to the liking of all people, and especially music lovers.
Azerbaijani music is flourishing today. International music festivals, various contests, constantly held in our country, serve a wider promotion of Azerbaijani culture and music in general. Uzeyir Hajibeyli, who presented brilliant masterpieces to the world musical treasure, is the founder of Azerbaijani professional music, the creator of the composer school and the genre of musical comedy in Azerbaijan. He founded opera, operetta in the East, created a state chorus, a symphonic orchestra and enriched the world musical treasure with immortal works. And the most important, Hajibeyli is the pride of Azerbaijani music. He is sometimes called a father of Azerbaijani music. 
 
The Uzeyir Hajibeyli International Music Festival, which is held on September 18 every year, has become a tradition. We celebrate already the 10th Uzeyir Hajibeyli International Music Festival this year. Annually, various events are held on the occasion of this day of music in our country. Worldwide famous artists attend these events.

We have interviewed Azerbaijan’s well-known musicians and have learned their thoughts about the Music Day.
 
They are followers of Uzeyir Hajibeyli
 
According to musicologist and educator, PhD of arts, secretary of the Azerbaijan Composers’ Union, professor of Baku Music Academy and honored artistic figure Zemfira Gafarova, music is her life: "It is impossible to live without music. Music accompanies me since my childhood. Since then I’ve lived in this atmosphere. Actually, my parents were artists. Nevertheless, my mother played the piano, while my father played tar. I grew up in Icharishahar and was surrounded by a lot of creative people who wrote their names in the history of Azerbaijani culture in gold letters. They had a great impact on my love to music. People cannot imagine of how many beautiful emotions music consists of. Music is different. There are large-scale works, symphonies, operas, ballets, and there are also a more democratic songs in a genre that is closer to the public. I wish that beautiful songs will remain in the history of our national music.”
 
Gafarova noted that Hajibeyli had created a new direction in the history of musical culture of Azerbaijan and had laid the foundation of the national composer school: "Today is the birthday of our genious composer, known as a creator of the first opera, the first musical comedy and the first examples of several other genres in the history of Azerbaijani music. He is the first Azerbaijani folklorist and composer and the first Azerbaijani musicologist who explored and substantiated the depths and directions of Azerbaijani music. At the initiative of Gara Garayev, a quartet was created in the 50s. These are very important events. Our holiday today is related to Hajibeyli’s name. I would like the collectives created by him to participate in festivals and concerts. As you know, he created the State Orchestra of Folk Instruments and the Choir collective. They are followers of Hajibeyli. Hajibeyli always said that "both folk music, and European music are needed. We would like to have world music masterpieces in our national music.” Of course, this was his advice to us which we are following today.”
 
We do not forget Uzeyir Hajibeyli’s contributions to Azerbaijani music
 
According to Sardar Farajov, Director of the Uzeyir Hajibeyli House Museum, honored artistic figure and honored art worker, music is an indicators of the culture of nations all over the world: "There is no nation in the world without music. Azerbaijani music is the best of them. Our folk songs, ashug music, mugams, and all the music created by our professional composers, are one of the most beautiful masterpieces of our culture. The Azerbaijani people preserve, beautify and purify their culture with their music. Music for me is the most beautiful, meaningful concept of life. Most of my day passes with music. Music holiday today is related to the name of great composer Uzeyir Hajibeyli. We do not forget Uzeyir Hajibeyli’s contributions to Azerbaijani music. Today, they purify and beautify the spirituality of Azerbaijani people. Uzeyir Music is a real holiday. Our state also attaches great importance to our music and appreciates it. Festivals that are held in our country prove this. The 10th Uzeyir Hajibeyli International Music Festival, which started today, is an obvious example. Musicians, orchestras, performers from around the world have attended this festival. All of their performances are actually part of the great holiday. I suppose we will also make a contribution to the Uzeyir Festival.”
 
Living with music is an affection
 
People's Artist, holder of the Order of Glory, Faiq Sujaddinov said that he dedicated his life to music and cannot imagine his life without it: "I perform every day and I breathe with music. I’ve studied at the Asaf Zeynalli Musical College for 4 years and at the Azerbaijan State Conservatory for 5 years. I live and work with this energy. I have been doing music since I was 7 years old. Music has become a part of my life. Music is my child, my grandchild, my family. Music surrounds me all the time. I do not have a day without music. Azerbaijani music followed me wherever I went. Today is the holiday of us, musicians. Azerbaijani music has passed through centuries of development. Its roots reach the depths of centuries. Living, working, surrounding with it means that you live in beauty. I have always said that living with music is an affection.”
 
Noting that Azerbaijan’s rich musical art has centuries-long history of development, Sujaddinov spoke about Hajibeyli's creative way: "Hajibeyli left us a legacy of his great music. He wrote the first opera in the East. Hajibeyli is a genius composer who has made a great contribution to Azerbaijani music. He has enriched the Azerbaijani national music, which existed in the form of verbal folk music till the beginning of the 20th century, by the achievements, forms and genres of Western European composer schools. He has determined the future development perspectives, aesthetic principles of Azerbaijani and Oriental music in general. The first operetta in the Muslim East is also connected with the name of Uzeyir Hajibeyli. Today is his birthday and our holiday. Happy Holiday!”
 
As experts say, Azerbaijani music, which is enriched by creations of great artists like Uzeyir Hajibeyli, is flourishing today. The heritage of Hajibeyli, which never lose its freshness, is an unrivaled wealth. He has left this wealth for all mankind. We must preserve and transmit it to future generations.
 
Music is an echo of our feelings. It is a harmony between heaven and earth. Happy Holiday, dear music lovers! With the hope to meet at the 10th Uzeyir Hajibeyli International Music Festival, starting with the Music Day.
 
Xayala Rais

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