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Stars of exile: How the daughter of the White Guard officer became the “First Lady of the Musical” in Europe

The name of Tatyana Pavlovna Ivanova is hardly known to the general public, although the songs in her performance are probably familiar to everyone. In Europe, the late 1950s – early 1960s. she was called the first lady of the musical, and in her homeland she was forgotten for a long time – Ivanova was the daughter of a White Guard officer who emigrated to Germany after the revolution. About how the performer of Russian romances and gypsy songs conquered Europe and Australia, without having achieved recognition in Russia during her life, – further in the review.

Tatyana Ivanova was born in 1925 in Charlottenburg, the western part of Berlin, where her parents moved after the 1917 revolution. Prior to that, the family lived on Vasilyevsky Island in St. Petersburg. Her father, Pavel Ivanov, was a White Guard officer, and her mother, Elena Ion, was an opera singer. Although Tatyana grew up in Germany, she was brought up in the traditions of Russian culture – they only spoke Russian in their house, and their parents instilled a love of national songs and romances since childhood, they often listened to records with recordings of Chaliapin, Plevitskaya and other performers of that time.

After leaving school, Tatyana continued her studies at the theater school of the German Theater in Berlin. After that, she began performing on the stage of the same theater and made her film debut, shone in the theaters of Hamburg and Dusseldorf. Ivanova had a magnificent voice, a bright mezzo-soprano. The greatest role was brought to her by the main role in the German version of the musical comedy “Hello, Dolly!” In 1966. She played this part more than 400 times. A year later, a record was released with songs from this play, which was sung by all of Europe. In the late 1960s – early 1970s. Tatyana Ivanova starred in several television shows, performed leading roles in musical performances.

In the late 1950s – early 1960s Tatyana Ivanova shone on the stages of many theaters in Europe. In Germany she was called the “first lady of music”, in Europe – the “queen of the musical.” However, her fame spread far beyond Europe. Tatyana Ivanova spent several years in Australia, where she continued to play in musicals, only now in English. And upon returning to Germany, the singer continued her pop, theater and film career, most often speaking in the genre of operetta and musical. Until the end of her days, she retained the title of “first lady of the musical.” She had no equal in the performance of “Theme of Lara” in the musical “Doctor Zhivago”.

Subsequently, Tatyana Ivanova turned to the Russian repertoire and began to perform with her own concert programs. A major role in her formation as an artist was played by the famous performer of Russian and gypsy songs and romances Ivan Rebrov. They sang a duet more than once, performed together in concert programs, and released a joint disc.

The singer sang songs and romances in the manner that prevailed in pre-revolutionary Russia and did not take root on the Soviet stage – in socialist culture she was considered to be “philistine, decadent and alien to the class identity of the Soviet person.” But in the Russian culture of emigration, it remained still popular, because the preservation of the vocal and stage traditions of the “old scene” was considered a priority there. For many emigrants, such songs were the only connecting link with their lost native culture during their life abroad.

October 6, 1979 Tatyana Ivanova died of breast cancer in a clinic in Hamburg. At that time she was only 54 years old. During her lifetime, the singer was never able to gain wide recognition in her historical homeland. Although in Europe Tatyana Ivanova was called the legendary singer, in Russia her name remained banned for a long time.

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