Sergey Kuryokhin

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Sergey Kuryokhin (Russian: Серге́й Анато́льевич Курёхин, also transliterated as Sergei Kuriokhin, Sergei Kurekhin, Sergueï Kouriokhine, Sergey Kuriokhin, etc.; nicknamed "The Captain";[1] 16 June 1954 – 9 July 1996) was a Russian composer, pianist, music director, experimental artist, film actor and writer, based in St. Petersburg, Russia.


Kuryokhin began his acting career as a piano and keyboard player with a school band in Leningrad. After playing with professional jazz-bands as well as popular rock musicians, Kuryokhin went through several stages in his career, and eventually became one of the most recognisable names and faces in Russia during the 1980s and 1990s.[citation needed]

By the end of his life, he had emerged as an avant-garde film composer, performance artist and film actor. Outside Russia he is primarily known as a jazz and experimental musician, through his works released since 1981 on UK's Leo Records, as well as his concert tours with Ensemble Pop-Mekhanika and his happening show also titled Pop Mekhanika. He also made a significant contribution to several albums (in particular: Triangle, Taboo and Radio Africa) of the famous Russian rock band Aquarium.[citation needed]

His memorable film works include starring in (and composing music for) Two Captains II (Два капитана II), a comedic pseudo-documentary about World War I; the soundtrack to the neo-noir Russian horror film, The Designer (Russian: Господин Оформитель), and the lead role of the combative nerd taking on the local mob, in Lokh pobeditel vody.

Kuryokhin shot to fame after creating one of the first popular media viruses in the Russian media. It was one of his semi-improvised acts of performance art, broadcast live on Russian television in May 1991. As a guest on the popular talk show Fifth Wheel, Kuryokhin provided "proof"[2] that Lenin was a mushroom.[3] During the 1990s, Kuryokhin was a board member of the St. Petersburg City Council for Culture and Tourism. In 1995 Kuryokhin joined the National Bolshevik Party.[4]


He died of a rare heart condition, cardiac sarcoma, aged 42 in 1996, and was laid to rest in the Komarovo Cemetery, near the tomb of Anna Akhmatova.


The Saint-Petersburg Annual International Music Festival SKIF (Sergey Kuriokhin International Festival) is named after him. Kuryokhin festivals annually take place in Berlin, Amsterdam and New York.

In 2004 the Sergey Kuryokhin Foundation and the Kuryokhin Center were founded. The foundation collects information about Kuryokhin and the Center organises events in the spirit of the artist. Both are located in the same building, an old cinema in Saint Petersburg. In 2009 the Sergey Kuryokhin Foundation and the Kuryokhin Center established an annual award in the field of the modern art.[5]


Other works[edit]

  • Music for the stage production of the Chekhov's Chaika (aka The Seagull) (1994)
  • Music for the Russian TV series Anna Karenina (2007)

Also wrote Title Music for entire BBC TV series Comrades 1985 one episode of which featured him and other Leningrad Musicians and his Orchestra Popular mechanics

See also[edit]


External links[edit]