Classical Fact

As a student at the Leningrad conservatory, Semyon Bychkov was not always quiet about his opposition to the enforced Soviet political dogma. Bychkov was set to make his professional conducting debut in the mid 1970s, but the concert was cancelled after Soviet authorities told the Leningrad Philharmonic's managers that Bychkov was politically unreliable. At the age of twenty, and before he could graduate from the conservatory, Bychkov's career seemed doomed. In spite of all of this, Semyon Bychkov emigrated to the United States and has become a highly respected and internationally renowned conductor.