Since perestroika, [Vladimir Tarnopolsky] and other Soviet composers have found it easier to ignore the stifling doctrines of Soviet realism, the musical party line enforced by the infamous Soviet Composers Union. This political change has also allowed the 34-year-old Moscow composer to hear his compositions played outside the Soviet Union and to enjoy the acclaim of foreign audiences.
Soviet bureaucracy nearly foiled his efforts to come to San Diego-his first trip to America-to participate in the city's Soviet arts festival. Although the San Diego Symphony had made all the requisite arrangements for him, the composer was delayed at the last minute by Soviet authorities who suddenly demanded more elaborate travel documents and an additional visa for his overnight stay between planes in London. He persevered and arrived in San Diego on Sunday night, two days later than expected.
According to Tarnopolsky, "Brooklynsky Bridge" is a four-movement piece whose solemn opening movement combines the Soviet and Russian national anthems. The jazz-like second movement, "Prohibition," humorously evokes an American speak-easy.