Natalia Brasova - First Marriage

First Marriage

In 1902, she married Sergei Mamontov (1 October 1877, Moscow – 30 December 1939, Tallinn), a nephew of Savva Mamontov. Sergei was a rehearsal accompanist for Savva Mamontov's Opera Company, which was renamed Association of Russian Opera after Savva's bankruptcy in 1899, and later at the Bolshoi Theatre. Through her first husband's connections, Natalia became friendly with noted musicians such as Sergei Rachmaninoff and Feodor Chaliapin. The couple moved into 13 Mansurovsky Lane, a new apartment building near the fashionable Prechistenka street, and had a daughter, Natalia or "Tata" to the family, on 2 June 1903. Sergei had a stammer and was of a retiring disposition, but Natalia was keen to socialise. Finding him socially dull, she began to go out unaccompanied by her husband. Russian divorce law followed the teachings of the Orthodox Church, and in practice divorce was only possible in cases of adultery where the husband was the guilty party. In 1905, Sergei agreed to a divorce and to act in the proceedings as if he was the unfaithful partner. Now free from her first husband, Natalia married her lover, cavalry officer Vladimir Vladimirovich Wulfert (Russian: Вульферт).

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