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UDC 78 + 791.43
DOI: 10.30628/1994-9529-2021-17.4-143-172

Natalia G. Kononenko
State Institute for Art Studies,
Kozitsky, 5, 125009, Moscow, Russia
Researcher ID: AAS-7697-2021
ORCID: 0000-0003-2060-2917
e-mail: tintinnio@yandex.ru

For citation
Kononenko N.G. On Sergey Kuryokhin’s Film Music: from Mechanics to Affect. The Art and Science of Television. 2021. 17 (4), pp. 143-172. https://doi.org/10.30628/1994-9529-2021-17.4-143-172

On Sergey Kuryokhin’s Film Music: from Mechanics to Affect

Abstract. The article is devoted to the Perestroika conceptual musician Sergey Kuryokhin and his experiments in the field of film music. Two films—The Castle (1994) by Aleksei Balabanov and Three Sisters (1994) by Sergei Solovyov—are analyzed as exemplary situations with music participating in the structuring of a cinematic form. The peculiarities of the dramaturgic construction of The Castle are largely determined by the film’s musical concept. It combines the genre model of opera ballet with a compositional scheme of the moment-form—a principle of free sequence of self-sufficient structures, invented by Karlheinz Stockhausen. The image of a music box—
a visual leitmotif voiced by Kuryokhin’s “mechanical” music—becomes an absurdist metaphor of the social order demonstrated in the film. In Three Sisters, on the other hand, the musicality of the cinematic structure stems from the connection, characteristic of Chekhov’s primary source, of artistic space with the natural universe and the inner intonation of the verbal form. This feature of the original play is answered in the film by filling the diegetic space with visual attributes of the elements (snow, fog, autumn
leaves) correlated with the off-screen sounds (dripping water, wind, birds), as well as acoustic auratization of space. The sound text in Three Sisters demonstrates the work with romantic intonation clichés inlaid into the flow of the composer’s individual style. The author of the article shows how Kuryokhin’s searches in the field of film music had anticipated the cultural discourse of the metamodern long before it became a cultural trend in the 2010s. For instance, his methods of transforming baroque expressive figures (ornamentation elements and lamento intonations) into repetitive formulas, as well as deliberate simplification of the intonational development and the musical syntax are interpreted in the text as a search for a new artistic affect in the semantic range from New Simplicity to metamodern post-irony.
Keywords: Kuryokhin, music, cinema, Balabanov, Solovyov, affect, post-irony, metamodernism