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Famous Kazakh composers and their works


Famous Kazakh composers and their works

Traditional music of the Kazakh people is a rich treasury of spiritual heritage. It embodies all the talent and wisdom of the people. It acquired special historical significance, especial artistic and cultural value.The Kazakh steppe over the centuries lived by inspired poetry, accurate eloquence and heartfelt songs. Music penetrated the life of Kazakh; it was heard at festivities, in ceremonies, rituals and in routine works. The Kazakh people are notable for the unusual musical talent, almost in any family there is a person that can wonderful sing or play folk instruments.

Dina Nurpeissova


Dina Nurpeissova (1861-1955) — kuishi-composer, was born in Western part of Kazakhstan. She started playing dombyra when she was nine years old. She was a talented apprentice of the great Kurmangazi. Her work is characterized by uniqueness of her peculiar style of performance. The Music was the only goal and the meaning of her life. Wherever she was, dombyra was her inseparable companion. During her long career Dina had created many masterpieces of song. For creative work she was awarded the title of National Artist of Kazakhstan.

Her kuis “Bulbul”, “Esemkonyr” and others have been stored in the gold reserves of Kazakh music.



Name of the great Kazakh classical composer Kurmangazy known around the world. He has made an invaluable contribution to the development of Kazakh instrumental music. He is called as the “father” of the kui. In his kuis Kurmangazi gave a thought, mood and dreams of his people of his time. At the sound of his music, you could feel the beauty and the breath of the Kazakh steppe.


Famous kuis: “Sary-Arka”, “Adai”, “Serper”, “Kishkentay” and others have been invaluable spiritual heritage. Kurmangazi — unique musician, the pride of the Kazakh people.



The great thinker, kuishi, hero of many legends lived in IX century on the banks of the Syr Darya. Using thin strings of kobyz he could convey the beauty of the surrounding world. He is considered as original founder of the tradition of performance of kuis on kobyz. Many kuishi, zhyrau and shamans bowed their heads in front of him, and accepted him as their mentor. In the legends, he is described as a man who defied to death, seeking happiness for all humankind. On the banks of the Syr Darya River there is a monument in the form of kobyz, created by great architect Beck Ibraev. It is a tribute to commemoration of Korkyt. They say that on windy days, you could hear the sounds similar to the melody kyuis.

Famous kuis: “Korkyt”, “Akku”, “Korkyttyn Saryny”, “Zhelmaya” and others.

Ykylas Dukenuly


Ykylas Dukenuly — prominent Kazakh kuishi was born and raised in Zhanaarka, Zhezkazgan region. His father and grandfather were kobyz players. Their talent was transmitted by inheritance to Yhylas who grew up and matured to the tune of kobyz. With the lapse of time, he continued the path of the legendary kuishi Korkyt. Yhylas — one of the prominent representatives of the Kazakh national music. His name has a special place of honor in the history of the Kazakh culture and art. After Korkyt, Yhylas was a man who was able to “animate, infuse life” kobyz strings, stringed musical instrument that holds many secrets. Nowadays, there are many followers of him.

Famous kuis of Yhylas: “Akku”, “Erden”, “Kaskyr” and many others have been the musical heritage of the Kazakh people.

Nurgisa Tlendiyev


Nurgisa Tlendiyev was the famous Kazakh composer, conductor, dombyra player, Kazakhstan and USSR National Artist, Laureate of the State Prize “Halyk Kaharmany” was born in Almaty region. His father was kuishi and mother was a singer, so from childhood he started to demonstrate musical talents, and started to play with dombyra when he was 5 years old, and in 12 years became member of orchestra. Nurgisa was an originator and the Chief Conductor of the Folkloristic Ethnographic Orchestra «Otyrar Sazy».

He composed music to 40 plays and 20 movies. His kuis are “Akku”, “Ata Tolgauy”, “Alkissa”, songs “Saryzhailyau”, “Alatau”, “Oz Olim”, etc. became truly folk. The author of the “Kosh Keruyeni”, "Makhambet", “Farabi Sazy”, "Ata Tolgawy", "Aksak Kulan", "Makhambet”, etc. classics and around 500 musical compositions in various genres.

Akan seri Akzhigit Koramciuly


Akan seri Akzhigit Koramciuly (1843-1913) is an akin, composer. He was composer of pathetic lyrical songs and a poet, virtuosic singer at the same time. He wrote many lyrical songs such as Syrymbet, Makpal, Karamar, Akkoilek, Aktokti, Perizat, Ai kok, etc.

Songs of Akan seri deeply and vividly depicted pictures of falconry, wanderings, and the image of the horse pacer. His songs were popular all over the steppes of Kazakhstan. “Akan-seri — Aktoty” by Muhamedzhanov was devoted to the life of the great composer.

Evgeniy Brusilovskiy


Evgeniy Brusilovskiy (1905-1982) was a Soviet Russian composer who settled in Kazakhstan. He wrote the first Kazakh opera, co-wrote the music for the Anthem of the Kazakh Soviet Socialist Republic, and was a People's Artist of the Kazakh SSR.

In 1933 he was sent to Alma-Ata, Kazakhstan (then the Kazakh Soviet Socialist Republic) to study the folk music of the region, and stayed there for the rest of his life. From 1934 to 1936 he was the Music Director of the Kazakh National Theatre, and from 1949 to 1951 the Artistic Director of the Philharmonic. He founded the Abay Opera House in 1934.

Evgeniy Brusilovskiy frequently used the music and legends of Kazakhstan in his compositions. He wrote music for famous operas such as Kyz Zhibek, Amangeldy, Aiman-Sholpan. Also, for ballets: Kozy Korpesh and Bayan Sulu. It counts almost 500 songs and 8 symphonies.

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