About the Museum

The Museum, dedicated to the great Russian composer of the Silver Age, Alexander Nikolayevich Scriabin, has been situated in stately two-storied house between the streets of New and Old Arbat for more than 90 years. It is one of few museums in the world, where furnishings of the beginning of XX century has been kept.

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The first mention of this mansion dates back to the year of 1802. In 1812 there was a fire in the house, and later it was reconstructed. It gained present appearance in 1903. This building was one of the most famous cultural centers in Moscow of the time. It was owned by the privat-docent of Moscow University, Russian scholar A.A. Grushka. He used to live on the ground floor, and the first floor used to be for rent.

A.N. Scriabin took the apartment on the first floor since 1912. He lived there with his family (his second wife T.F. Schlözer, her mother, his aunt and three children, Ariadna, Julian and Marina). Here were spent last years of his life – from 1912 to 1915. Here ended his short life journey on 14 (27) April 1915.

The gala day of Museum opening was on 17 July 1922. The first exhibition had also been prepared for this event. This very date – the day when the doors of the Museum were open for visitors – is considered to be the beginning of the Museum's history.

A.A.Grushka made first steps for the creation of future memorial apartment of Scriabin: he defrayed all the expences of its upkeep. A.V. Lunacharsky, the head of the Ministry of Education, launched an initiative, that helped the apartment to avoid a flatshare. On 20 August 1918 the widow of the composer was given the Writ of Protection – a document providing the apartment furnishing integrity. Nevertheless future museum was transferred from one department to another, the furniture of the composer's aunt, L.A. Scriabina, was taken away, and there was one attempt of the flatsharing.

Tatiana Fedorovna Schlözer had been registered as a Museum director during all period of time before its oficial opening. She was to be the head of it afterwards, but she didn't live to this event. Shortly before her death she managed to make a detailed listing of all the items in main rooms of the apartment.

Sergey Ivanovich Kashtanov was appointed as the head of the memorial Museum after the decease of T.F. Schlözer. He settled in on of ground floor rooms due to the reallocation of living space, willingly started taking care of Scriabin's property and supported the family of the deceased composer. Ideological pressing started in 1930s made the creative activity of museums more complicated. Besides, at the cusp of 1930-40s during a short period of time the Museum changed three directors. On 1 September 1941 года it was headed by Tatiana Grigorievna Shaborkina (1906 – 1986).

During the war the Museum was in the state of half-conservation. Almost all the exhibit items were carried away, there took place a long endless renovation. The museum didn't receive excurcionists, but inside it there happened constant artistic activity: here took place regular concerts of V. Sofronitsky, G. Neigaouz, S. Feinberg, L. Zyuzin; a literary scholar, ethnographist, priest S.N. Durylin lectured there. Maria Alexandrovna Scriabina, the composer's daughter from the first marriage, who was the research worker of the Museum in 1941 – 1957, was captured by theosophical and anthroposophical ideas, and she organized there classes of eurhythmy and declamation. In the end of 1940s she was taken with the idea of “Light symphony”.

Maria Alexandrovna worked in association with engineer Yevgeny Alexandrovich Murzin. In 1957 he patented a photoelectronic synthesizer which he called ANS (A.N. Scriabin). The ANS was the matter of great interest among the musicians. The first studio of electronic music started to be organized. Young composers, who were going to become the world famous musicians, worked there: E. Artemyev, A. Volkonsky, S. Kreitchi, A. Schnittke, E. Denisov, S. Gubaidulina, A. Nemtin, S. Kalloś, V. Martynov.

Moscow Experimental Electronic Music Studio officially opened in 1966. The ground floor of communal apartment was prepared for this purpose, and later there was created a Spherical Hall of Scriabin in order to hold the light-music sessions. But after the death of Murzin in 1970 the activity of the Studio began to decrease, and by the end of the decade it had come to an end. The room was given at the disposal of Scriabin Museum, and in ex-Studio on the ground floor opened a hall for concerts and exhibitions.

In 1980 T.G. Shaborkina and her colleagues managed to achieve the separation from the Moscow Museum of the History of Religion, the part of which Scriabin Museum had been since 1962. In this capacity the Museum was headed by the new director, Tamara Viktorovna Rybakova. She held this position in 1984-2010.

During these years there were initiated restoration works with the records of execution of music by A.N. Scriabin and V.V. Sofronitsky and also Scriabin House began a busy publishing work. There was founded a Scriabin Scholarship for young talented performing musicians.

The Honoured Cultural Worker Alexander Ivanovich Lazarev has been the head of the Museum since 2010.

Nowadays the Memorial Scriabin Museum is the scientific-research and scientific-educational center, it organizes international scientific conferences and various exhibitions – educational, archival, comercial – including the offsite ones. In the Museum there are held the educational programs for children; and every year a competitive audition for the Scriabin Scholarship takes place there. Our guests have the opportunity to visit thematic excursions, lectures, concerts, video-musical projects, meetings with well-known musicians, actors, artists and writers. Every year the Museum takes part in citywide programs.