New album by Dmitry Hvorostovsky

New album by Dmitry Hvorostovsky


norman lebrecht

July 06, 2016

The great Siberian baritone, who is undergoing treatment for brain cancer, releases a new recording next month of Russian operatic arias.

You can listen to a sample track here.

hvorostovsky putin

press release: NEW YORK, NY – On August 12, 2016 Delos releases Dmitri Hvorostovsky Sings of Love, Peace, War and Sorrow [DE 3517], a new recording featuring the internationally acclaimed baritone performing opera arias and scenes by Tchaikovsky, Prokofiev, and Anton Rubinstein – two of which Hvorostovsky has never before performed on stage: Tomsky from The Queen of Spades and the title role of Mazeppa.

Led by conductor Constantine Orbelian with the State Symphony Orchestra of Russia as well as the “Evgeny Svetlanov” Helikon Opera Chorus, the recording also features several guest artists: internationally acclaimed Lithuanian soprano Asmik Grigorian, (the latest recipient of the prestigious International Opera Award as Young Female Singer of 2016), mezzo-soprano Irina Shishkova; bass Mikhail Guzhov, tenor Igor Morozov, and countertenor Vadim Volkov.

The recording begins with the opening scene from Prokofiev’s War and Peace with sopranos Asmik Gregorian and Irina Shishkova. The program continues with four arias from three beloved Tchaikovsky operas: Mazeppa’s aria (“O Mariya, Mariya”) from Mazeppa; Roberto’s aria (“Kto mozhet sravnitsja s Matildoj moej”) from the composer’s final opera Iolanta – plus two selections from The Queen of Spades, including Tomsky’s ballad (“Odnazdy v Versale, au jeu de la Reine”) withMikhail Guzhov (Surin), and Igor Morozov (Chekalinsky); and Tomsky’s song (“Yesli b milyye devitzy”). The latter two arias from Tchaikovsky mark a departure for Hvorostovsky. For years he was known for his performances of Prince Eletsky in The Queen of Spades – but in this recording, he takes on the other baritone role, that of the conniving and coldhearted Count Tomsky. The album’s closing selection is the sixth and final scene from Anton Rubinstein’s rarity, The Demon. Hvorostovsky had long wanted to perform the opera’s title role, and finally got the chance to do so in 2015, in a semi-staged Moscow production co-starring soprano Asmik Gregorian as Tamara – an event that was broadcast live on Russian television. 



  • John Borstlap says:

    One of the great voices of our time. Hope that music will completely cure him… he cannot be missed. Also it is to be hoped that he will not be recruted for the regime.

    Why has the decent description ‘CD recording’, or simply ‘CD’, been supplanted by the proletarian pop-term ‘album’? It always gives the impression that the production is not quite serious and will be stacked together with rap and heavvy metal in the shops.

    • Dirk Fischer says:

      You obviously don’t know much about typical terms in the recording industry. There is absolutely nothing wrong with ‘album’ in the context of classical music. The whole notion that a conceptual recording, reperoire-wise or else, can not be serious is preposterous. It leaves little flexibility for artists who do not want to just make a “CD”.

      Hoping that Hvorostovsky will not be “recruted” by “the regime” also shows you do not understand much about the Russia of today. This idea is quite absurd and simply no reflection of reality at all.

      I do hope that Hvorostovsky will get better, as he is a wonderful artist. Music, certainly, will not cure him, though.

      • John Borstlap says:

        Bark bark bark…. 1) Not so long ago, ÇD’was the normal, regular and entirely appropriate term for recordings of classical music. If ‘the industry’ thinks otherwise, it is plain wrong, as in so many other things. It has no authority in musical matters. 2) One must be blind to not understand how eagerly the Russian regime seeks support not only from a misled population, but also from top artists, exactly like the nazi regime in thirties’ Germany. It is part of such regimes strategies.

        • Dirk Fischer says:

          I don’t know what you are referring to, but to my knowledge, the regular and entirely appropriate term for recordings of classical music has always been “recording” – whatever the physical carrier might be.

          It is very telling that you mention “the industry”, as it is she who actually wants to continue making “CDs” (which you seem to so admire), whilst the artists are far more interested in recording conceptually linked repertoire, or programmes that might be called an album. Does this mean you think the artists, who perform and record music, have no authority in musical matters?

          As far as Russia is concerned, this might be your interpretation from afar. As someone who has worked and lived in Russia with Russian musicians, I can tell you that what you imply is not the truth. Life is rarely as black and white as you put it.

          • Sue says:

            That last paragraph of yours; yes, that is perfectly true. But British Jonathon Dimbleby did a series for TV on Russia a few years ago and interviewed lots of people for the program. He was staggered by the amount of unquestioning support for Putin and his ‘regime’. We all were disturbed by that.

  • Nick says:

    Constantin Orbelian has made a lot of recordings, quite a number with artists of the calibre of Hvorostovsky, Renee Fleming, Anna Netrebko and Sondra Radvanonsky. Yet I don’t recall seeing his name conducting orchestras outside Russia, even though he is American by birth. Anyone know if there is a reason for this? With artists like these he surely can’t be self-financing.