On any given morning, on the street corners of a Russian city, little kiosks suddenly appear. As soon as their shutters open, a queue forms, men and women lining up in the hope of a little bit of luxury: a pair of silk stockings or a box of chocolates. One morning news spreads that the exiled composer, Selinsky, will be returning to the city for one concert only, and there is one kiosk, somewhere, selling tickets to this most magical event of the year. So begins the story of a family, in which a ticket to Selinsky's concert means everything: for Sergei, the father, it holds the promise of an affair with another woman; for his wife, Anna, it offers the hope of winning back her faithless husband; for their son, Alexander, it means the possibility of escaping to the West. "The Concert Ticket" is a fabulously told story of love, longing and escape, of beauty in a world of repression, and of a family at the mercy of each other and the times in which they live.
Olga Grushin was born in Moscow in 1971. Her novel The Dream Life of Sukhanov was shortlisted for the Orange Award for New Writers 2006 and the LA Times Seidenbaum Award for First Fiction 2006. Grushin was selected as one of Granta's Best Young American Novelists 2007. Her writing has appeared in the Guardian, Granta and The Partisan Review. She lives in Washington DC with her husband and son.