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"House of songs"

8 Tverskoy Boulevard
3.3
A small social club for romances singing lovers turned into an ordinary residential house.
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Now, looking at the houses 8, 10 and 12 of Tverskoy boulevard, it is difficult to determine where one ends and the another one begins. They look as a single building, and in fact in 1910, when the house was built number 8, it was the highest house on the even side of the Boulevard.

The seven-story apartment building owned by V.F. Graeffe was designed by architect N.G. Lazarev. Graeffe was also an author of the the house number 10 (1908) design project. The facade of the building almost undecorated while maintaining strict, laid back style. All the lines are concise.

"House of Song" of Baroness Mary Alekseevna Olenina-d'Algeym was located in the building number 8 before the revolution. Only a few people have heard of this popular romances singer of the early twentieth century. Contemporaries recalled that "her voice was small and not of very beautiful tone" and that her vocal manner "was not perfect."

The secret of her talent was in an excellent diction (newspapers wrote about the "declamatory talent") and acting skills. She was able to transfer the contents of a romance or songs to listeners perfectly. Maria Alexeevna remembered the entire repertoire by heart.

Maria  organized the "House of Song" club together with her husband. Olenina’s Performances  were often accompanied by lectures and conversations about art. V.Bryusov and A. Bely visited here. "House of Song" conducted seven poetic and musical competitions with the participation of foreign composers in 1908-1916. "House of Song" published a newspaper, newsletters, brochures, annotations and texts of songs performed in concerts, conducted classes for singers.

“House of Song " company was established with the purpose of the studying of poetry and music and the preparation of the performers in 1912. Over a thousand people were members of the community in Moscow and St. Petersburg by 1917.

After the revolution, Algeym and her husband leave for France, but in 1959 the actress returned to the USSR. Unfortunately, not a single record of her voice was preserved.

The backyard of the House number 8 is also famous because it was mentioned in the popular song of 1980s:

The house has eight on Tverskoy Boulevard

It was clear even to kids,

That of the guy from flat number 107

The prettiest in the yard.

Now it is a residential building.

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