How The 'Leningrad Symphony' Became A Beacon Of Hope For A Besieged City

Email a Friend
German troops advance through a blazing Leningrad suburb, in Russia on Nov. 24, 1941. (AP)

Composer Dmitri Shostakovich had an often-difficult relationship with the Soviet government. But when he completed his seventh symphony, often called the “Leningrad Symphony,” in 1941, it became a beacon of hope for the besieged city.

Author M.T. Anderson (@_MTAnderson) tells that story in “Symphony for the City of the Dead: Dmitri Shostakovich and the Siege of Leningrad,” and talked with Here & Now‘s Robin Young about the book in September 2015.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit