Based on "Moscow, Cheryomushki" by Dmitri Shostakovich
Moscow, Cheryomushki (Russian: Moskva, Cheryomushki) is an operetta in three acts by Dmitri Shostakovich, his Op. 105. It is sometimes referred to as simply Cheryomushki. Cheryomushki is a district in Moscow full of cheap subsidized housing built in 1956, and the word is also commonly used for such housing projects in general.
The libretto was written by the experienced team of Vladimir Mass and Mikhail Chervinsky, leading Soviet humorists of the day. The satirical plot dealt with a topical theme geared to one of the most pressing concerns of urban Russians, the chronic housing shortages and the difficulties of securing livable conditions. Cheryomushki translates to “bird-cherry trees” and the operetta was named after a real housing estate in southwest Moscow.
The work was completed in 1958 and received its premiere in the capital on 24 January 1959. The operetta is reminiscent of Shostakovich’s popular music of the period, yet at the same time it engages a satirical assessment of the housing redevelopments in Moscow.
Dmitri Shostakovich (1906–1975) Libretto by V.Mass and M. Chervinsky