Lyatoshynsky, Boris - Ozymandias and other Romances - Savenko, Vassily (bass)

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Vassily Savenko, bass; Alexander Blok, piano

The music of the Ukrainian composer Boris Lyatoshynsky (1895-1968) is familiar in his home country but sorely neglected abroad. Lyatoshynsky's songs are neglected even there: this anthology of his best romantsiy for low voice and piano contains many first recordings. The songs meld intense Scriabinesque expressionism with elements of Ukrainian folksong in a language that embraces both the lyrical and the dramatic. His setting of Shelley's Ozymandias, with its warning of the impermanence of power, was a brave act in the Soviet Union of 1924. The booklet contains full sung texts, with English translations by Russian-music expert Anthony Phillips, who also provides an extensive introduction to Lyatoshynsky, his songs and his artistic milieu.

Ukrainian-born Vassily Savenko completed his vocal studies at the Moscow Conservatory. He won both the Mussorgsky and Lysenko Competitions and has sung principal roles for major opera houses in his native Ukraine and in Russia, including the Bolshoi Opera in Moscow and the Kirov Opera, St Petersburg, where he sang Iago (Otello) under Valery Gergiev. In the early 1990s Vassily Savenko moved to Britain where his debut at the Wigmore Hall launched the showcase vocal series 'Russian Images'. He and Alexander Blok have already released Russian Settings of Robert Burns on Toccata Classics (TOCC0039). In 2012 he sang the roles Prince Gremin (Eugene Onegin); Khan Konchak (Prince Igor), and the title role in Boris Godunov for the State Academic Opera Theatre, Ukraine.

Later that year he joined the extensive European tour of Tchaikovsky's Iolanta under Emmanuel Villaume, as the mystic healer Ibn-Hakia, with Anna Netrebko in the title role.

Born in Moscow in 1957, Alexander Blok graduated from the Gnessin Academy of Music, Moscow, in Piano (under Vladimir Tropp) and composition under Georgy Litinsky). As a principal soloist with the Moscow Concert Philharmonic, he performs as concert pianist and chamber-music leader. A Moscow resident, he joined the USSR Composers' Union in 1985; his significant output includes compositions for string orchestra, solo piano, vocal, chamber and ballet music. He is related to the influential Russian poet-playwright Alexander Alexandrovich Blok (1880-1921).

Artikelnummer TOCC0053
Streckkod 5060113440532
Utgivningsdatum 2013-05-15
Kategori Vokalt
Skivbolag Toccata
Enhet CD
Antal enheter 1
Artister Savenko, Vassily (bass)
Kompositörer Lyatoshynsky, Boris
Disk: 1
1 Five Romances for bass and piano, Op. 5
2 From Four Romances to words by Shelley and Balmont
3 Ozymandias, Op. 15
4 Three Romances for low voice and piano, Op. 6
5 From Four Romances to verses by A. Pushkin, Op. 27
6 The Sun
7 From Five Romances to verses by I. Franko, Op. 31
8 From Two Romances to verses by L. Pervomaysky, Op.
9 Romances for bass and piano, Op. 57
10 Two Romances, Op. 37
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