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Modest Mussorgsky



Modest Mussorgsky
Wiener Staatsoper, 1989

Soloists: Vladimir Atlantov, Nicolai Ghiaurov, Yuri Marusin
Orchestra, Chorus: Chor der Wiener Staatsoper, Slovak Philharmonic Choir, Wiener Sängerknaben
Conductor: Claudio Abbado
Director: Alfred Kirchner

Arguably Modest Mussorgsky's greatest work, Khovanshchina was incomplete at the time of his death and so this glorious production, from the Vienna State Opera, employs Shostakovich's scoring with the addition of the final chorus composed by Stravinsky in 1913. It is a work of immense power and humanity, set at the time when Peter the Great assumed power in Russia, a turning point in Russia's history when old forces came into conflict with new. Political intrigue, religious persecution, the tragedy of a nation, all form a backdrop against which individual dramas are acted out. The great Bulgarian bass, Nicolai Ghiaurov sings Prince Ivan Khovansky, the leader of the revolutionary Streltsys and Paata Burchuladze sings Dositheus, the leader of the Old Believers. Fellow Russians, including Ludmila Semtschuk as Marfa and Vladimir Atlantov as Khovansky's son, complete this formidable cast. This live recording of Alfred Kirchner's production of Khovanshchina is conducted by Claudio Abbado. Triumphantly hailed as "one of the great performances of our day, an unforgettable display of skill and sympathy combined", by the Financial Times, it is a recording to treasure.

Press Reviews

"If you want to purchase a DVD of Khovanshchina then this one has to be it; there is no competition." John Leeman, MusicWeb, August 2004

"Eine Aufführung, die der Wiener Staatsoper alle Ehre macht und keinerlei Staub angesetzt hat. [...] Magie geht vom Pult aus: Claudio Abbado, der die Schostakowitsch-Fassung um Mussorgskys eigene Orchestrierungsskizzen ergänzt und den problematischen Schluss in der Strawinsky-Version spielen lässt, vollbringt immer wieder kleine Klangwunder. Clarté und Transparenz verbinden sich mit epischem Atem und einem feierlichen Grundduktus. [...] Drei Prachtbässe, die sich in Timbre und Temperament deutlich unterscheiden, singen um die Wette: der immer noch imposante Nicolai Ghiaurov als Ivan, der balsamisch vollmundige Paata Burchuladze als Dosifey und der baritonal geprägte Anatoly Kotscherga als Schaklowity." Ekkehard Pluta, Fono Forum, August 2004

"The result is a wonderful work which is absolutely gripping. All the principals come from what used to be known as Eastern Europe and have that wonderful Slavic edge to their voices. [...] In the pit Claudio Abbado, the prime mover behind the production, conducts like a man possessed. It's long (three hours) and comes on two discs but is a production for all opera-lovers to cherish. Do not miss it." Opera Now, November/Dezember 2004

Label: Arthaus Musik

Genre: Opera

Running Time: 188

Picture Format: 4:3

Disc Format: PAL

Sound Format: PCM Stereo

Number of Discs: 2

Region: 2, 5

Languages: RU

Subtitle Languages:


Catalogue No.:


EAN: 4006680103105

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