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Lebendige Vergangenheit - Mark Reizen
Alexander Borodin, Alexander Sergeyevich Dargomizhsky, Mikhail Glinka
Lebendige Vergangenheit - Mark Reizen
Genre: Classical
  •  Track Listings (11) - Disc #1


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One of the great singing basses of the century
Victor Han | Pointe Claire, Canada | 09/25/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Mark Reizen (1895-1992) is one of the great singing basses of the century. He was endowed with a voice of unique velvety timbre capable of the the softest pianissimos and the most powerful sounds, all seemingly effortlessly produced and supported by superior intelligence and musicality.A giant of a man, he was almost 6ft 4in tall, and an impressive figure on stage. He was one of the best performers of the leading Musorgsky bass roles such as Boris Godunov and Dosifei from Khovanshchina. On this CD Reizen displays his extraordinary vocal characterization qualities in major Russian roles. One of my favorites is the tremendous Song of the Viking Guest from Rimsky-Korsakov's Sadko. In the great aria of Khan Konchak from Prince Igor, the easy "stroll" of the voice to the low F in the central section is just miraculous. The song of Prince Gremin from Tchaikovsky's Eugene Onegin displays great sensitivity, simplicity of phrasing and total respect for the musical line. Reizen enjoyed a uniquely long career, his live performance of Prince Gremin on the stage of the Moscow Bolshoi Opera to celebrate his 90th birthday, still in impressive voice and physical shape has made the "Guinness Book of Records".Victor Han"
A vocal phenomenon
Ralph Moore | Bishop's Stortford, UK | 01/10/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Any lover of the human voice should be acquainted with the glorious basso profondo of Mark Reizen. A tall, dignified, intensely private artist, Reizen was undoubtedly one of the two or three greatest 20C Russian basses. His vast, velvety voice sounds as if it floated on a column of air; Reizen was capabale of sustaining notes on a whisper of sound and expanding to thunderous top F's and G flats, while the low notes resonate like an organ pedal. Yet Reizen's singing is chiefly characterised by his intelligence and good taste as a performer; he relies upon beauty of tone, subtlety of dynamic gradation and clarity of articulated text to make his effects and never approaches the kind of vulgar showmanship of which some accuse Chaliapin. His performance at the Bolshoi in 1985 of Gremin's aria from "Eugene Onegin" on his 90th birthday is one of opera's miracles and may easily be viewed on YouTube, should any doubters need conversion. This disc preserves arias some of his greatest Russian roles; the extended excerpt from "A Life for the Tsar" is especially welcome but all the accounts here are stupendous. The microphone occasionally struggles to cope with the amplitude of sound, such is the power of his instrument."