Heydar Aliyev's role in life of Muslim Magomayev

Heydar Aliyev's role in life of Muslim Magomayev

Today Heydar Aliyev would have turned 95 years old. His name is associated with Azerbaijan's recent history - the revival and awakening of the national consciousness. At the same time, Aliyev personally played an important role in the life of many people. One of them is All-Union popular singer Muslim Magomayev.

Magomayev got to know Aliyev at a distance in the late 1960s, when Heydar Aliyev was chairman of the Committee for State Security of the Azerbaijani Soviet Socialist Republic. Then Muslim Magomayev fell into disgrace due to a misunderstanding. Soviet singers were paid 200 rubles for solo concerts. One cunning concert organizer asked the artist to perform in Rostov-on-Don at a triple rate, saying that there was an official permit from the Ministry of Culture, according to which the soloist at the stadium is paid in triple. Magomayev did it and got money, signed the official accounting paper. The story was publicized, and the Department Against Misappropriation of Socialist Property took an interest in activities of concert administrators. "I had a serious detractor, one of Furtseva's deputies, who took advantage of it. So they decided to punish me," Magomayev said. They punished him with 6-month silence, forbidding tours, appearances on radio and television.

The artist decided that every cloud has silver lining, and went to Baku to graduate from the conservatory there. Suddenly he was summoned to Azerbaijan's Committee for State Security to Heydar Aliyev's deputy and ordered to go to Moscow for performing at a concert dedicated to the anniversary of the State Security Committee. It turned out that the ban was removed at the personal request of the head of state security Yuri Andropov, who called minister of culture Yekaterina Furtseva and demanded that the singer perform at the concert, saying that the Committee for State Security had no complaints against Magomayev. Perhaps this was due to the fact that there were many admirers of Magomayev in the committee, or, perhaps, Heydar Aliyev had a phone call to Andropov.

In the near future Aliev and Magomayev met personally. It happened in 1970, after Heydar Aliyev was elected first secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Azerbaijan. They were on "tour" across the Soviet Union - Aliyev made speeches at factories, plants, while Magomayev represented Azerbaijan's musical culture . "Since that time, Aliyev began to patronize me in a fatherly way. The wisdom of the elders is above all else in the East. Heydar Alievich treated my uncle Jamal as an aqsaqal [Djamal Magomayev led the Ministry of Industry of the Azerbaijan SSR in the 1950s, was a deputy of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR - VK]. And now I consider it an honor to treat Heydar Alievich exactly the same way. I didn't ask him for much for me, it was more pleasant for me to help my fellow musicians ... Some of them had problems with housing, ranks, or trips ... And I went to Aliev with a whole list. In most cases he settled everything," Muslim Magomayev told.

Soon he was offered to become a deputy of the Supreme Council of Azerbaijan, which was extremely hard for  the musician. "I was sitting at the meeting for one hour while Heydar Alievich spoke, then I snuck out, and three days passed without me. Once I did not come at all, then I did come when I knew that Geidar Alievich would speak. I arrived there just to show respect for him. Aliyev even told me once: "Muslim, how do you feel about this? You at least pretend that you understand something. I made you a deputy so that you would come to me with requests on legal grounds." Then the "revolution" started, Heydar Aliyevich resigned, and naturally, I was done with the deputy's office as well," Magomayev said.

It is interesting that Aliyev never asked Magomayev to join the ranks of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. He explained his position this way: "You are an artist, you have other horizons. The party is a discipline, the predominance of the public over personal.... And you are an unpredictable, undisciplined man... Besides, we should have well-known non-party personalities as well."

Aliyev had a pleasant tenor baritone, he loved and encouraged people of art. Heydar Aliyev's name is associated with "black Fridays" of party and economic leaders, who were forced to attend classical symphony concerts every week. After the transfer to Moscow as the first deputy chairman of the Council of Ministers of the USSR, Heydar Aliyev, among other things, oversaw the culture.

At that time young Magomaev - a man with generous nature - often threw parties, binges. "It's high time for you to marry! That's not the right behavior," Heydar Aliyev instructed him. Finally, in 1974, Magomayev decided to marry the soloist of the Bolshoi Theater Tamara Sinyavskaya, whom he met in 1972 in Baku during the Decade of Russian Art in Azerbaijan. Tamara Sinyavskaya was already married to the ballet dancer by that time, Magomayev also had experience of an unsuccessful youthful marriage. "If you made one mistake that you were married, try not to make a second mistake," Aliev said to Magomayev , but promised to attend the wedding. He could not. State affairs interfered. "So we celebrated until four in the morning. Suddenly a phone call at nine o'clock. I heard my uncle Jamal's strict voice:" Get ready, Heydar Alievich is waiting for you and Tamara in his office, he's leaving in the afternoon." We went to the office of the permanent representative office. Tamara stayed in the waiting room and I went to Aliyev's office, pretending to be awake as hard as I can. "He looked at me in surprise:" What is this with your face? Did you sleep enough?" "I, Heydar Aliyevich, taught my wife to eat khash." "Well ... I congratulate you with all my heart. We can celebrate on the train to Tula, if you want. Then there will be short speech and "now a kiss". And the driver will take you from there." It was a joyride. It was a real wedding train: good food, an unusual, but very nice atmosphere... So, thanks to Heydar Aliyevich, me and Tamara have rushed through life on our train for more than three decades," Muslim Magomayev said.

In 1977, Magomayev's uncle Jamal died, who at that time was the ambassador of the Azerbaijan SSR in Moscow. They say that he was a strict man, but he sincerely loved his nephew and promoted in him a love of music, homeland, respect for the roots, practically replacing his father, who died in the war. "After the death of my uncle Jamal, Heydar Alievich drove the coffin on his plane, carried it himself, buried it together with us, and told me: "Muslim, treat me as your closest person. You are in my family now. Come see me any time you need for any issues." Since then, Heydar Aliyev became like both an uncle and a father to Magomayev.

Muslim Magomayev outlived Heydar Aliyev by only five years...

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Vestnik Kavkaza

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