Symphony No.3 "The First of May". For orchestra with chorus.In one movement. E flat Major.
Original Title "May Symphony"
Premieres: January 21, 1930. Leningrad. Moscow-Narva House of Culture. Symphony Orchestra of the Leningrad State Philharmonia and the choir of the Leningrad State Academic Capella. January 22, 1930. The Great Hall of the Leningrad State Philharmonia.
Premiere abroad: December 14, 1932. Philadelphia. Philadelphia Orchestra. Conductor L. Stokowski.
First Edition: "Muzgiz" Publishers, 1932.
Manuscripts: in the Russian State Archive for Literature and Art (Stack 2048, Inv. 1, Item 3; Stack 653, Inv.1, Item 2266).
"This work is of a kind completely different from 'October'. While in 'October' the dominant theme was that of struggle, the 'May Symphony', if one can express it in this way, is one of festive mood, of peace-time construction. At the end, in order to heighten the impact on the listener, I introduced a chorus using words by the poet Kirsanov."
(report written by D. Shostakovich as a post-graduate of the Leningrad State Conservatoire, 1929)
"The only piece which can, in my opinion, claim to 'occupy a place' in the development of Soviet musical culture is the symphony 'The First of May', inspite of a number of flaws".
(D. Shostakovich, " A Declaration of a Composer's Obligations". "Rabochii i teatr", 1931, No.31)