Bucharest, January 25, 1956: Two of the greatest voices ever…

Bucharest, January 25, 1956: Two of the greatest voices ever. Orchestra and Chorus of the “George Enescu” Philharmonic of Bucharest, conductor Constantin Silvestri. He defected in 1958 and died in England in February 1969. Precisely a month after this great performance, in Moscow, Nikita Khrushchev delivered the Secret Speech in which he dealt a mortal blow to the Stalin myth. The year 1956 marked the beginning of the breakdown of Marxism-Leninism as an institutionalized utopia. In June, strikes in Poznan were fiercely repressed. In October, Poland engaged in a real attempt to liberalize the system. On October 23, the Hungarian Revolution erupted. It was ferociously smashed by Soviet tanks. Stalinism persisted in Romania until December 1989. I remember a New Year’s eve party in the late 1960s at my cousin Olga’s place. Among the guests, Emilia Petrescu Cironeanu’s son. If memory helps me, his name was Vali, from Valeriu or Valentin…

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