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    MOSCOW, JANUARY 6, 2004. /RIA Novosti/ -- All the best Russian musicians living all over the world are to take part in the seventh Vozvrashcheniye (Homecoming) chamber-music festival at the local conservatoire's Rakhmaninov hall. The festival will open today, January 6th.

    This educational musical project was launched in 1998 by the Vozvrashcheniye culture-development foundation.

    Talking to RIA Novosti here today, the festival's organizer Mikhail Khokhlov explained that the project's authors believed that Russian performers (i.e. laureates of major international contests, as well as soloists of leading European and American philharmonic orchestras), who are scattered all over the world, should take part in Russia's musical life for at least some time. By the way, all these world-famous musicians have graduated from Moscow's higher-education establishments.

    More than 35 performers, including pianists Ksenia Bashmet and Alexander Kobrin, cellists Boris Andrianov and Christina Blaumane, violinists Roman Mints and Ilya Norshtein, viola-player Maxim Rysanov, harpist Tatiana Oskolkova, singer Julia Korpacheva and many others, are to take part in the Vozvrashcheniye-2004 festival.

    Quite a few national and world-class debuts are scheduled to take place. Numerous works by little-known composers are often performed here for the first time during this festival.

    The Musica Politica concert is to feature pieces by Ravel, Janacek, Poulenc and Britten that were written in the wake of historical and political events.

    Festival audiences will then be treated to the "Gods" program, i.e. a review of religious and mythological themes in music.

    Pieces by Brahms, Saint Saens, Debussy, Britten and other composers are included in the "Swan Songs" program.

    The festival is to end January 12 with a concert featuring modern interpretations of pieces from different epochs.

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