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Detailing the works of one of Russia’s greatest masters and full of fine, often authentically Russian performances, this fascinating 25-CD release is guaranteed to provide hours of pleasurable listening.
From the orchestral virtuosity of Scheherazade to the poetic beauty of The Snow Maiden, the Edition contains all of the composer’s most famous works. It also features many compositions which have not held the stage, or concert hall outside Russia, as well as they deserve, such as the little performed String Sextet and Quintet for Piano and Winds of 1876.
The composer’s three symphonies also make an appearance, as do many of his songs - ones that count Tolstoy and Pushkin among their authors. Perhaps most importantly the set features several of Rimsky’s operas, from the lesser known, carnivalesque May Night and Mlada to the late masterpieces, The Invisible City of Kitezh and The Golden Cockerel, which respectively assimilate Wagnerian innovation and anticipate Stravinskian economy of idiom.
Featuring folksong, fairy tale and bewitching orchestration, this release contains many magical moments, especially in the operas. It exposes all facets of the Rimsky- Korsakov’s character and records an important part of performance history including some of Russia’s greatest singers and ensembles.
• Performed by: Armenian Philharmonic Orchestra, London Symphony Orchestra, Philharmonia Orchestra, Leningrad Philharmonic, Bolshoi
Theatre Orchestra, Oistrakh Trio, Loris Tjeknavorian, Yondani Butt, Evgeny Mravinsky, Evgeny Svetlanov and many others.
• Includes booklet notes by the Russian music scholar and journalist David Nice.