Ivan Khandoshkin

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Ivan Yevstafyevich Khandoshkin (Russian: Иван Евстафьевич Хандошкин, Ukrainian: Іван Остапович Хандошко) (1747 – 29 or 30 March 1804) was a Russian Empire violinist and composer of Ukrainian Cossack origin. He has been described as "the finest Russian violinist of the eighteenth century".[1]


Ivan Kandoshko was born into a cossack family near Myrhorod. He was related to the family of Hetman Danylo Apostol. Ivan's father Ostap was trained as a tailor, but eventually became a professional French horn and percussion player in the court orchestra of Tsar Peter III. Ivan studied under Tito Porta with other Italian influences being Domenico dall’Oglio and Pietro Peri. He was a musician at the Russian court from 1765, of which he later became kapellmeister, and he taught violin at the Yekaterinoslav Musical Academy, founded by Potemkin in 1785, but after the death of Potyomkin Khandoshkin was forced to resign by Giuseppe Sarti who considered his rival, and he returned to St. Petersburg in 1789.[1]


Khandoshkin extant works comprise six violin sonatas and several variation cycles based on folk songs. His music (primarily for the violin) is comparable to music by his contemporaries such as Giuseppe Tartini's student, Antonio Lolli (whose stunts on the violin preceded Paganini), Gaetano Pugnani, Ludwig Spohr, and many others. His music was unfamiliar to the average western ear until recently, when violinist Anastasia Khitruk discovered some of the sheet music and began performing several works, and later recorded them for Naxos #8.570028 in St. Petersburg at St. Cathrine's Church in 2005.[2]

Viola concerto[edit]

The so-called "Khandoshkin's viola concerto in C Major, written in 1801" published for the first time by the State Publishing House, Moscow, in 1947 and released in the former Soviet Union on Melodya, with Rudolf Barshai, playing viola and conducting the Moscow Chamber Orchestra in reality is not a Khandoshkin' composition, but a musical hoax by Mikhail Goldstein. [3]


  1. ^ a b Geoffrey Norris, "Ivan Khandoshkin". The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians online.
  2. ^ Naxos; see liner notes by Anne Mischakoff Heiles
  3. ^ See liner notes by Anne Mischakoff Heiles in Naxos and Mischakoff, Khandoshkin and the Beginning of Russian String Music, UMI Press, 1984.

1. Anne Mischakoff. Khandoshkin and the Beginning of Russian String Music. UMI, 1984.

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