Fikret Amirov was a prominent Azerbaijani composer of the Soviet period. Fikret Amirov grew up in an atmosphere of Azerbaijani folk music. During his childhood and early adolescence, Fikret began composing pieces for the piano. Upon his graduation from the Ganja Music College, Amirov entered the Azerbaijan State Conservatoire, now known as the Baku Music Academy, where he was a student of Boris Zeidman and Uzeyir Hajibeyov.
In 1941, when Nazi Germany attacked the USSR, Amirov, 19 at the time, was drafted to the Soviet army. He was wounded near Voronezh, hospitalized and demobilized from the military service, returning to Baku to continue his studies at the Azerbaijan State Conservatoire.
Amirov's music was strongly influenced by Azeri folk melodies. He created a new genre called symphonic mugam. Amirov's symphonic mugams were based on classical folk pieces and were performed by many renowned symphony orchestras throughout the world, such as the Houston Symphony Orchestra conducted by Leopold Stokowski.
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