The Murder of Dmitry Revutsky: to Investigate, or to Ignore?




murder of Dmytro Revutsky, musicological investigation, Ukrainian musical culture during the German occupation


The relevance of the article is due to the appeal to the complex and controversial period of the German occupation of 1941–1944, which is one of the most mythologized in Ukrainian historiography. It was distorted by both silencing the truth and imposing half-truths or outright lies. The murder of Dmytro Revutsky is a concrete example of myth-making in the history of musical culture, which the proposed article is intended to refute.

Main objectives of the article is on the basis of multifaceted elaboration of the collected factual material to verify the available versions of the murder of Dmytro Revutsky, determining the most probable of them.

The methodology. In the proposed article — source study — the central place is occupied by scientific criticism of sources, and methodological tools cover analytical, synthetic, logical, retrospective, chronological research methods.

Results and conclusions. Reconstruction of events showed that at first the German authorities classified information about the murder of musicologist Dmitry Revutsky, which gave rise to a wave of rumors that the composer Lev Revutsky was allegedly killed. Later, an official German version appeared about the murderers from the group of the Soviet underground fighter Vladimir Kudryashov (destroyed in 1942), which was later supported by Soviet ideology, but at first Moscow transferred responsibility for the crime to the German invaders. Valentina Kuzyk called this GermanSoviet version incorrect and put forward her own version, which we called “conspiratorial”: the real criminal is not Kudryashov, but a secret agent of the NKVD. V. Kuzyk considers the members of V. Kudryashev’s group to be “intelligent student youth”, a priori incapable of murder. In turn, we were able to establish that these people were typical representatives of the Soviet proletariat and did not differ in highly moral behavior. Having verified the available documentary evidence, we believe that the members of Kudryashov’s group could well have been the killers of Dmitry Revutsky.

Author Biography

Iryna Sheremeta, Rylsky Institute of Art Criticism, Folklore and Ethnology NAS of Ukraine

leading art critic at the Department of Musicology and Ethnomusicology


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Personal dimension of music history