Lyricist behind Moscow Olympics theme song dies at 94 — RT Games & Culture

Legendary Russian poet Nikolai Dobronravov, who wrote the lyrics to the theme song of the 1980 Moscow Summer Olympics and many other hits, has died at the age of 94, his friends and colleagues announced on Twitter. social networks.

Dobronravov died Sunday morning in a Moscow hospital after a long illness, sources close to the poet told the Moskovsky Komsomolets newspaper.

The lyricist and his wife, composer Aleksandra Pakhmutova, 93, were hospitalized with Covid-19 at the end of 2020. They were discharged after a month, but the poet never fully recovered from the virus. His health continued to deteriorate and he could barely walk in recent months, sources said.

The song “Goodbye, our affectionate Misha!” co-written by Dobronravov and Pakhmutova, accompanied one of the most iconic moments in Olympic history. It was played during the closing ceremony of the 1980 Moscow Olympics, as the giant inflatable figurine of the Games’ mascot – a bear named Misha – flew from the Luzhniki Stadium. The live broadcast from the Soviet capital captured many locals and foreign guests in the stands in tears.

Dobronravov and Pakhmutova, married in 1956, wrote many songs together that were performed by the country’s most popular singers and are known and loved by Russians of all ages. He also worked with other famous composers.

The Russian cities of Yaroslavl, Vorkuta and Magnitogorsk each chose a song by Dobronravov as their official anthem.

Dobronravov’s death is “an irremediable loss” Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin wrote on his Telegram page offering his condolences to the poet’s family.

His songs “have always given (people) strength, being with them in times of sadness and joy”, he wrote.

The poet will be buried at the Novodevichy cemetery in the Russian capital, Sobyanin said.

Many famous Russian artists are buried at the cemetery, including writers Anton Chekov and Mikhail Bulgakov, as well as composers Dmitri Shostakovich and Sergei Prokofiev.

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