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One of the founders of Azerbaijani musical theater: Zulfugar Hajibeyov

Qarabag.com presents material about one of the representatives of the Azerbaijani professional musical art, a native of Shusha, Zulfugar Hajibeyov.


Composer Zulfugar Abdul Huseyn oghlu Hajibeyov was born on April 5 (17), 1884 in the city of Shusha. His father served as a scribe under the Azerbaijani poetess, the daughter of the last Karabakh khan, the patron of art Khurshudbanu Natavan, and his mother was one of the confidants in her house. In the family of Hajibeyovs there were 3 sons and 2 daughters. Zulfugar’s brothers were Azerbaijani composer Uzeyir Hajibeyov and Azerbaijani publicist, adviser to the delegation of the Azerbaijan Democratic Republic at the Paris Peace Conference (1919-1920), Ceyhun Hajibeyli. Zulfugar Hajibeyov’s sons, Maestro Niyazi and Chingiz Hajibeyov, were prominent conductors of Azerbaijan.
[D. Jebrayilbeyli. Zulfugar Hajibeyov. 1985, pp. 72-73]
[Music Encyclopedia. Volume 1, 1973, p. 871]
[The documents from personal archives: A.M. Topchibashi:1903-1934, 2012, p. 25]
[Ismayil Hajibeyov. Articles, essays, memoirs. 2007, p. 98]

After graduating from the Shusha two-year Russian-Tatar school, Zulfugar began to help his father at work. With the death of his father in 1901, the whole family burden rested on Zulfugar’s shoulders. In 1900-1902 he worked as a copyist of the municipal Duma and the County Administration, and in 1902-1906 – as a translator under the Commissioner in the Department of Agriculture in Shusha. In 1907, Zulfugar and his sisters moved from Shusha to Baku.
[D. Jebrayilbeyli. Zulfugar Hajibeyov. 1985, p. 74]

Zulfugar Hajibeyov played an important role in the creation of the national musical theater. In 1909-1910, he wrote his first work – the operetta “Young at Fifty Years Old”. It was successfully staged in Tiflis, Baku, Shusha, Yerevan, Nakhichevan, Julfa and in Iran, by the Azerbaijani musical troupe organized by Zulfugar Hajibeyov.
[D. Jebrayilbeyli. Zulfugar Hajibeyov. 1985, pp. 84-85;87-88]
[Azerbaijan Soviet encyclopedia. Volume X. 1987, p. 147]
[Ismayil Hajibeyov. Articles, essays, memoirs. 2007, p. 98]

In June 1911, Zulfugar Hajibeyov wrote the musical comedy “Rich Man” (“Eleven-Year-Old Woman”), and in 1912 – “Single while Married”. In 1915-1916, Hajibeyov wrote the opera “Ashig Gharib”.
[D. Jebrayilbeyli. Zulfugar Hajibeyov. 1985, p. 79;90]
[Music Encyclopedia. Volume 1, 1973, p. 871]
[“Bakinskiy rabochiy”. October 1, 1950, No. 206 (8943) p. 4]

After the establishment of Soviet power in Azerbaijan (1920), Hajibeyov, in 1920-1923, worked in the Political Department of the Red Army.
[D. Jebrayilbeyli. Zulfugar Hajibeyov. 1985, pp. 80-82]
[Music Encyclopedia. Volume 1, 1973, p. 871]

Zulfugar Hajibeyov, together with Uzeyir Hajibeyov, was engaged in collecting and recording Azerbaijani folk songs. In total, they collected nearly 300 folk songs. In 1933-1937, Zulfugar worked as the artistic director of the eastern musical part of the Azerbaijani radio broadcasting.
[“Bakinskiy rabochiy”. October 1, 1950, No. 206 (8943) p. 4]
[D. Jebrayilbeyli. Zulfugar Hajibeyov. 1985, pp. 83-85]
[Music Encyclopedia. Volume 1, 1973, p. 871]

Zulfugar Hajibeyov, together with his son, Azerbaijani composer and conductor Niyazi, wrote the music for the film “Almas” (1936) based on the play by Azerbaijani playwright Jafar Jabbarli.
[D. Jebrayilbeyli. Zulfugar Hajibeyov. 1985, pp. 84-85]

In 1943, for his merits in the field of art, Hajibeyov was awarded the title of Honored Artist of the Azerbaijan SSR. He was awarded the medals “For the Defense of the Caucasus” (1944), “For Valiant Labor in the Great Patriotic War” (1945) and the Order “Badge of Honor” (1946).
[D. Jebrayilbeyli. Zulfugar Hajibeyov. 1985, pp. 84-85]

Zulfugar Hajibeyov died after a prolonged and serious illness on September 30, 1950 in Baku.
[D. Jebrayilbeyli. Zulfugar Hajibeyov. 1985, p. 85]
[“Bakinskiy rabochiy”. October 1, 1950, No. 206 (8943) p. 4]