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Polyushko-polye (Russian: По́люшко-по́ле, IPA: [ˈpolʲʊʂkə ˈpolʲɪ]) is a Soviet Russian-language song. Polye means "field" in Russian, "polyushko" is a diminutive/hypocoristic form for "polye". It is also known as Meadowlands, Song of The Plains, Cavalry of the Steppes or Oh Fields, My Fields in English.
The music was composed by Lev Knipper, with lyrics by Viktor Gusev in 1933. The song was part of the symphony with chorus (lyrics by Gusev) "A Poem about a Komsomol Soldier" (Поэма о бойце-комсомольце) composed in 1934. The original lyrics are sung from the perspective of a Red Army recruit, who proudly leaves his home to keep watch against his homeland's enemies.
The song was covered many times by many artists in the Soviet Union, including a well-known rock version recorded by The Singing Guitars (Поющие гитáры), released c. 1967. The song has been regularly performed and recorded by the Alexandrov Ensemble, and it is listed in the Alexandrov Ensemble discography, best known as the Red Army Choir.
Full version at London 1945 Youth Congress
At the opening of the London 1945 Youth Congress, the full version of Polyushko-polye was performed by a choir of 6,000 members. The music for this performance was composed by musician L. A. Stokovsky, based on the original music of L. Knipper.
The song is also the third one heard at the beginning of Cast Away, an American movie starring Tom Hanks, right after Elvis Presley's "Heartbreak Hotel" and "All Shook Up".It is also heard in The Russians are coming.
Use in Swedish Student Culture (Livet är härligt)
The melody of Polyushko-polye is of significance in Swedish student culture. In 1959 the melody was used in the Chalmers University "Spex" (a form of student theater) production Katarina II, with altered lyrics as follows:
Livet är härligt,
Tavaritj vårt liv är härligt.
Vi alla våra små bekymmer glömmer,
när vi har fått en tår på tand en skål.
Ta dig en Vodka,
Tavaritj en liten Vodka.
Glasen i botten vi tillsammans tömmer,
det kommer mera efter hand.
Life is Wonderful,
Comrade, our life is wonderful.
We all forget our small troubles,
when we have ad a drink, a toast.
Take a Vodka,
Comrade, a little Vodka.
Bottoms up we empty our our glasses,
more will come later.
The drinking song, or Snapsvisa has become an important toast at formal dinners at Chalmers University, and a culturally significant drinking song in Swedish student culture in the latter half of the twentieth century.
- "Ю. Е. Бирюков, История создания песни «Полюшко-поле»". muzruk.info. Archived from the original on 19 April 2018. Retrieved 22 June 2019.
- Video on YouTube
- "شريط 13 - انهض - فرقة الإسراء". Soundcloud. 2001.
- "Palin's Travels: Russkiy Island, Eastern Russia, Full Circle, Day 22". www.palinstravels.co.uk. Retrieved 22 June 2019.
- krisztina kugelman (4 August 2012). "Polyushko Pole Michael Palin and the Russian Pacific Navy". Retrieved 22 June 2019 – via YouTube.
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