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Melik-Pashayev: Borodin – Prince Igor (3 CD box set, APE)

Melik-Pashayev: Borodin - Prince Igor (3 CD, APE)

Melik-Pashayev: Borodin - Prince Igor (3 CD, APE)

Performer: Andrey Ivanov, Feodor Shaliapin, Boris Christoff, Nina Koshetz, Nadezhda Obukhova, Charles Friant, George Baklanoff, Andrey Ivanov, Evgeniya Smolenskaya, Sergey Lemeshev, Alexander Pirogov, Mark Reizen, Veronica Borisenko, Alexey Serov, Ivan Skobtsov, Feodor Godovkin, Elena Korneueva, Antonina Ivanova
Composer: Alexander Borodin
Orchestra: Bolshoi Theatre Orchestra, Bolshoi Theatre Chorus, RCA Victor Symphony Orchestra, Philharmonia Orchestra, Berlin State Opera Orchestra, Studio orchestra
Conductor: Alexander Melik-Pashaev, Issay Dobrowen, Gustave Cloez, Rosario Bourdon, Frieder Weissmann, Bruno Reibold
Audio CD
SPARS Code: A-D
Number of Discs: 3 CD box set
Format: APE (image+cue)
Label: Naxos Historical
Size: 444 MB
Recovery: +3%
Scan: no

Disc 1
01. Overture
02. Prologue: Solntsu krasnomu slava! (Glory to the beautiful sun!)
03. Prologue: Idyom na bran’s vragom Rusi (Let’s march into battle against the enemy of Rus)
04. Prologue: Chto eto znachit (What does it mean)
05. Prologue: Pust’ pridut knyagini i boyaryni (Let the princesses and boyars’ wives come)
06. Prologue: Pora idti nam v put (It is time to go)
07. Act I Scene 1: Slava, slava Volodimiru (Glory, glory to Vladimir)
08. Act I Scene 1: Recitative and Song of Galitsky: Nateshilsya li, knyaz’ (Had a good time, Prince)
09. Act I Scene 1: Recitative: Knyazyu Galitskomu slava! (Long live Prince Galitsky!)
10. Act I Scene 1: Oy, likhon’ko! Oy, goryushko! (Oh, there’s trouble! And such misfortune, Prince!)
11. Act I Scene 1: Stoy, rebyata! (Wait, lads!)
12. Act I Scene 1: Chto u knyazya da Volodimira (At the palace of Prince Vladimir)
13. Act I Scene 1: Da, vot komu by knyazhit’ na Putivlye! (Yes, this is who should rule in Putivl!)
14. Act I Scene 2: Arioso: Ne malo vremeni proshlo (Much time has passed)
15. Act I Scene 2: Tam devushki prishli k tebe, knyaginya (Some maidens have come to see you, Princess)
16. Act I Scene 2: Ay! Knyaz! Batyushki! (Oh, heavens! The Prince!)
17. Act I Scene 2: Dobro pozhalovat’, boyarye (Welcome, boyars)
18. Act I Scene 2: Zvon! Nabat! (Bells! The Alarm!)

Disc 2
01. Act II: Na bezvod’ye, dnyom na solntse (Without water, midday in the Sun)
02. Act II: Dance of the Polovtsian Maidens
03. Act II: Cavatina: Merknet svet dnevnoy (Daylight fades)
04. Act II: Solntse za goroy ukhodit na pokoy (Beyond the mountain, the Sun goes to rest)
05. Act II: Cavatina: Medlenno den ugasal (Slowly the day has faded)
06. Act II: Aria: Ty li, Vladimir moy, ty li (Is that you, my Vladimir, is that you)
07. Act II: Aria: Ni sna ne otdykha (No sleep, no rest)
08. Act II: Pozvol mne, knyazhe, slovo molvit’ (Allow me, Prince, to say a word)
09. Act II: Aria: Zdorov li, knyaz (Are you in good health, Prince)
10. Act II: Gey! Plennits privesti syuda! (Hey! Bring the captives girl here!)
11. Act II: Polovtsian Dance: Uletay na kryl’yakh vetra (Fly on the wings of wind)
12. Act II: Wild Dance of the Men… General Dance
13. Act II: Poyte pesni slavy Khanu! Poy! (Sing songs of praise to the Khan! Sing!)
14. Act II: Boys’ dance… Mens’ Dance

Disc 3
01. Act IV: Akh! Plachu ya, gorko plachu ya (Oh, I weep, I bitterly weep)
02. Act IV: Akh, ne buyniy veter zavyval (Oh, it was not the violent wind)
03. Act IV: Kak unylo vsyo krugom (All around, what a cheerless sight)
04. Act IV: On – moy sokol yasniy (It is he – my bright – eyed falcon!)
05. Act IV: Ty gudi, da (Play, you, play!)
06. Act IV; Narod! Syuda! (People, come here!)
07. Act IV: Final Chorus: Znat’, Gospod’ mol’by uslyshal (It seems the Lord has heard our prayers)
08. Prince Igor, Act I: Recitative and Song of Galitsky
09. Prince Igor, Act I: Yaroslavna’s Arioso
10. Prince Igor, Act II: Konchakovna’s Aria
11. Prince Igor, Act II: Vladimir’s Cavatina
12. Prince Igor, Act II: Prince Igor’s Aria
13. Prince Igor, Act II: Konchak’s Aria

Borodin’s Opera Prince Igor in star studded performance, and in much improved sound.

This is my third review of Alexander Borodin(1833-87) opera Prince Igor, and this recording is also Rimsky- Korsakov (1844-1908) version with one change. The overture included here was arrainged and orchestrated by
Alexander Glazunov (1865-1936) a star pupil of Rimsky- Korsakov, who heard when Borodin played it on the piano
And remembered it. Glazunov used the music included in the opera, and without question this overture is a masterpiece and therefore it is included in most of the recordings. Glazunov also composed the third Act from sketches (very vague ) left by Borodin , but it is almost always omitted in this and other recordings on the ground that Borodin never composed it. In my previous reviews I wrote a short history of the opera, and I invite everybody interested in it. This recording includes a cream of Russian singers, from the famous Bolshoi Theatre in Moscow. It is
Dominated by two beautiful basses, Alexander Pirogov as Prince Galitzky ( the greatest Russian Boris Godunov) and the Ukrainian bass Mark Reisen in the role of Khan Konchak , who is also known to the Western Audiences as Boris Godunov.Both artists display great experience of their roles supported by countless stage performances. The tittle role is sung by baritone Andrey Ivanov, another outstanding artist from the Bolshoi Theatre. There is no week point in this recording, because soprano Evgeniya Smolenskaya and mezzo soprano Vera Borisenko possess superb voices with excellent interpretation of their roles. Vladimir is sung by a beautiful lyric tenor Sergei Lemeshev . As I wrote before only ni the Soviet Union between 1940-70 it was possible because ther was only one Record Co. Controlled by the government and singers no longer in their primes were filling the secondary and minor roles. The
Rest of the cast is outstanding . Veteran conductor loves this music and with his firm hand creates a memorable
Performance.
Appendix: Selected arias from Prince Igor by legendary artists.
The six arias included here are of great interest:
Prince Galitzky aria is sung by Feodor Chaliapin and it can be compared with Alexander PIrogov. For me both interpretations are very profound and convincing.
Konchakova aria is beautifully sung by Nadezhda Oboukova and Vera Borisenko.
It is difficult to compare Vladimir’s Cavatina, when it is sung in French by tenor Charles Friant . In this case Sergei Lemeshev has the edge.
Prince Igor aria sung by George Baklanoff is interesting ,but Andrey Ivanov aria is a better recording.
Nina Koshetz and Evgeniya Smolenskaya are both superb, although Smolenskaya recording is some what better.
Basses Mark Reisen and Boris Christoff in the aria of Khan Konchak. Mark Reisen recording is good. Boris Christoff recording and performance while beeing also good is more vivid and varied, and is in much better sound. Christoff is truly a great artist. Thanks to excellent restoration by Ward Marston the sound is very good for the time. This perfprmance
Deserves five star but the sound little more than three. Therefore willing to be Honest I Rate it Four Stars.
Highly recommended.

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