Ignat Solzhenitsyn: His Father’s Legacy

Son of Soviet Political Dissident to speak at Benedictine College

Monday, March 14, 2022

Ignat Solzhenitsyn (Photo by Steve Riskind)Ignat Solzhenitsyn is a world-renowned pianist and conductor, recognized as one of today’s most gifted artists, but he is coming to Benedictine College on April 8 for a different reason. The son of the famous Soviet-era political dissident, writer and Nobel Laureate Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, Ignat is coming to the Atchison campus to talk about his father’s legacy of opposing political repression. Sponsored by the Benedictine College Honors Program and the Gregorian Fellows Program, Solzhenitsyn’s presentation is set for Friday, April 8, at 7:30 p.m. in O’Malley-McAllister Auditorium inside the St. John Paul II Student Center. The event is free and open to the public.

Solzhenitsyn, who is the Principal Guest Conductor of the Moscow Symphony Orchestra and Conductor Laureate of the Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia, will also impart his musical gifts to a small group of Benedictine piano students in a special piano masterclass. In addition, he will have a private meeting with the Honors students and Gregorian Fellows during which he will discuss his father’s 1993 Liechtenstein Address, “We Have Ceased to See the Purpose”.

Solzhenitsyn has recently led the symphonies of Baltimore, Cincinnati, Dallas, Indianapolis, Milwaukee, Seattle, and Toronto, the Nordwestdeutsche Philharmonie, the Czech National Symphony, as well as the Mariinsky Orchestra and the St. Petersburg Philharmonic. His extensive touring schedule in the United States and Europe has included concerto performances with numerous major orchestras, including those of Boston, Chicago, Philadelphia, Los Angeles, Seattle, Baltimore, Montreal, Toronto, London, Paris, Israel, and Sydney. He has collaborated with such distinguished conductors as Herbert Blomstedt, James Conlon, Charles Dutoit, Valery Gergiev, André Previn, Gerard Schwarz, Wolfgang Sawallisch, Yuri Temirkanov and David Zinman.

A winner of the Avery Fisher Career Grant, Solzhenitsyn serves on the faculty of the Curtis Institute of Music. He has been featured on many radio and television specials, including CBS Sunday Morning and ABC’s Nightline.

Founded in 1858, Benedictine College is a Catholic, Benedictine, residential, liberal arts college located on the bluffs above the Missouri River in Atchison, Kansas. The school is proud to have been named one of America’s Best Colleges by U.S. News & World Report, the best private college in Kansas by The Wall Street Journal, and one of the top Catholic colleges in the nation by First Things magazine and the Newman Guide. It prides itself on outstanding academics, extraordinary faith life, strong athletic programs, and an exceptional sense of community and belonging. It has a mission to educate men and women within a community of faith and scholarship.