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Mussorgsky: Boris Godunov
Modest Mussorgsky, Nikolai Golovanov, Bolshoi Theater Orchestra
Mussorgsky: Boris Godunov
Genre: Classical


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All Artists: Modest Mussorgsky, Nikolai Golovanov, Bolshoi Theater Orchestra, Orchestra of the Bolshoi Theater, Alexander Pirogov, Maria Maksakova, Mark Reizen, Maxim Mikhailov, Nikander Khanayev, Nikhander Khanaev
Title: Mussorgsky: Boris Godunov
Members Wishing: 0
Total Copies: 0
Label: Preiser Records
Original Release Date: 1/1/1949
Re-Release Date: 4/30/2002
Album Type: Box set
Genre: Classical
Styles: Opera & Classical Vocal, Historical Periods, Modern, 20th, & 21st Century
Number of Discs: 3
SwapaCD Credits: 3
UPC: 717281904834

CD Reviews

The best Boris forever!
Sergey Sh. | Moscow Russia | 12/17/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This famous recording made in 1949 by the Bolshoi Theater forces remains to my mind the best Boris available on record nowadays.
Deep and profound Boris sung by Pirogov, expressive Pimen by Mikhailov, passionate Dmitry by Nelepp, excellent Shuyskiy by Khanaev and incomparable Jurodiviy by Kozlovsky. The vocal team has no weaks at all including second part roles. Excellent chorus and orchestra lead by inspired Golovanov who perfectly conducted every note of this masterpiece.
All that is combined with masterful recording engineering which produces excellent sound quality of this recording.This Preiser set contains a valuable bonus - Mark Reizen as Boris from the recording made one year earlier (1948) with the same vocal team and also conducted by Golovanov. These excerpts present the full part of Boris.
Completely Boris recording with Reizen also is available on Lyrica Records label (Lyrica Records - #1092)."
Agreed with below
Wayne A. | Belfast, Northern Ireland | 10/08/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Hard to hold back on the superlatives. The sound quality flattened me; it's extraordinarily vivid, and for some fascinating reason an older monaural recording with a bit of swoosh in the background actually adds to the dark atmosphere of the work.

The soloists--Pirogev, certainly and especially--are consistently strong; the chorus is spot on and punched up, the orchestra is phenomenally muscular and the conducting is flawless. All in all one of the most powerful opera recordings you may ever encounter. I'm surprised it isn't a staple.

This was recorded only a few years after WWII, or the Great Patriotic War, and this recording has the same potent whiff of catharsis that some of Furtwangler's Beethoven Ninths from that era also emit. I'm not sure anyone has tracked this, but it seems that during the years immediately following the war (I'd guess at very latest till the early sixties) European orchestras, soloists, and conductors were engaged in a tremendous and ferocious mass exorcism. As I'm writing this I'm listening to de Sabata's 1954 Verdi Requiem and that same degree of intensity is present there too."
Breathtaking Boris
V. Stasov | 12/10/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This is the ultimate Boris Godunov. Preiser tosses in the Reizen Boris excerpts on disc 3, which were either recorded before or after Pirogov's. I've seen both claims. But even though Reizen is Reizen, that is, one of the greatest basses of the century, his interpretation cannot match Pirogov, who is so dramatic and expressive that you will live his descent into madness right along with him. While Reizen's voice is as beautiful as they come, he's a bit too careful to ever really sound psychotic, while Pirogov projects psychic pain of great magnitude. Not only a brilliant recording musically, but a gripping study in mental illness.

And the other reviewer is right - the older quality of the sound gives this recording an eerily powerful quality. The Opera d'Oro release of this performance is less expensive and just as effective, although Preiser's sound is superior.

The conducting is magnificent, the singing superb. This is THE desert island Boris for all time. I cannot praise it enough. Equally magnificent is Golovanov's Sadko. The great Georgi Nelepp is featured on both recordings."