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The art of Rachmaninov
Mikhail Voskresensky
Vera Gornostaeva
Mikhail Utkin
Vladimir Sofronitsky
Victor Fedotov
Maxim Fedotov
Henry Neighaus

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CR-085. Tchaikovsky. The Sleeping Beauty. Victor Fedotov.

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CR-085. Tchaikovsky. The Sleeping Beauty. Victor Fedotov.

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Weight: 200 g

For the connoisseur of Tchaikovsky the opportunity to hear how the score of the “Sleeping Beauty” was read by Victor Fedotov represents pleasure both extremely rare and really fascinating.
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The name of Victor Fedotov, an outstanding Russian conductor, Professor, People’s Artist of Russia, is well known among the music-lovers all over the world. The life and work of this brilliant conductor is bound to the Mariinsky Theatre in St-Petersburg.
In 1963 the young conductor, a winner of All-Union Competition, made his debut at the Theatre with “Carmen” by Bizet. He performed it by heart, without the scores; since then, maestro Fedotov kept the tradition of conducting by heart during all his career.
Since 1964 he toured in USA and Canada with the Metropo-litan-Opera orchestra; he ap-peared with Mariinsky orchestra in Australia, Great Britain, Aus-tria, Germany, Spain, Korea, Japan and other countries.
Since 1966, he regularly worked in the Royal Covent Garden Theatre in London. In 1967, he staged “Evgeny On-egin” by Tchaikovsky in Germany with the Dresden Staads Or-chestra. At the same time, he gave numerous symphony concerts and conducted the new versions of “Romeo and Juliet” and “The Swan Lake” in Zemper-Opera.
Victor Fedotov’s repertoire included more than 60 operas and ballets.
New productions of “Ivan Susanin” by Mikhail Glinka and “Tzar’s Bride” by Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov under his conductorship, as well as “Boris Godunov” by Mussorgsky that for the first time in its history was performed in the original version, became great musical events. This opera was performed in Stokholm during a tour to Sweden of the whole company of the Mariinsky Theatre.
"The orchestra under Victor Fedotov with his precise and broad gesture, has transferred with a rare transparency all the charm of music by Rimsky-Korsakov", the Powery-ecko newspaper observed in 1974. At that time, Maestro Fedotov was the Principal conductor of the Mariinsky Theatre.
Sundy Telegraph wrote that "…a great skill of the conductor Victor Fedotov in possession of the orchestra and his amazing consolation with the musicians… became a practical lesson how to conduct…"
Maestro Fedotov was one of the leading conductors of the Theatre and the art director of all main ballet productions; all ballet stars of the Mariinsky Theatre always felt greates respect and affection towards this outstanding musician, and together they made more than a 30 years’ epoche in the history of the Theatre.
Andrei Petrov, a famous composer and the author of the ballet “Creation of the World”, wrote about his work with Victor Fedotov: "I had an opportunity to value many remarkable qualities of this conductor… he always works very enthusiastically… besides, he has a gift of "seeing" the music, not only hearing it... it sounds very theatrically and expressively".
Among the premieres staged under his directorship are works by contemporary composers: “Left-hander” by B.Alexandrov, “Angara” by A.Eshpay, “Hamlet” by N.Tchervinsky, “The Villain and the devil” by V.Kladnizky, opera “Interven-tion” by V.Uspensky, “Pathetic Oratorio” by G.Sviridov, “Leningrad Symphony” by D.Shos-takovich, “Cinderella” by S.Prokofiev, “Notre Dame de Paris” by M.Jarre and others.
On the Lenfilm Studio, more than 30 films were made with the music recorded by Leningrad Symphony Orchestra conducted by Victor Fedotov; among them - “Marriage in Malinovka”, “Farewell to St.Petersburg”, “Green coach", "Snowgirl", "Silver strings", "Snow Queen", "The farewell debut", “The Swan Lake”…
Maestro Fedotov’s more than thirty years long partnership with the Leningrad Philharmony made a special chapter of his creative life. He gave dozens of concerts in the Great Hall of the Leningrad Philharmony with the two world famous Philharmony orchestras, collaborated with most eminent soloists and composers, made lots of recordings.
As a symphonic conductor, Victor Fedotov toured with Covent Garden Theatre orchestra, London Symphony and London Philharmony orchestras, Orchestra of the Vienna Theatre, Liceo of Barcelona, Gewandhaus and MDR in Leipzig, Bratislava and Brno Symphony Orchestras, Japanese orchestras - NHK, Tokyo Symphony...
Since 1972, Victor Fedotov was a professor of of opera and symphony conducting at the St. Petersburg Conservatoire, gave master classes in Russia and abroad.
Appart from Mariinsky Theatre, he worked with many important theatres such as Royal Stokholm Theatre (since 1994) Royal Covent Garden Theatre in London and Grand Opera in Paris (since 1995) New National Opera in Tokyo (since 1996) as a long term guest conductor.
Since 1996, he was a member of the Petrovskaya (Peter) Aca-demy of Arts and Sciences.
In 1998, he got the Evening Standard award for outstanding achievements in classical music performing Peter Tchaikovsky (1840 - 1893), a great Russian composer, is probably one of the most ingenious musicians in the world’s musical history.
He studied at the St. Petersburg Conservatoire; later, was a professor of the newly founded Moscow Conservatoire where he was invited by Nikolai Rubistein. Later, he spent a lot of time abroad (mostly in Italy, Switzerland). After 1885, Tchaikovsky lived in Russia (in various country homes near Klin, outside of Moscow; later, he bought a country house in Klin itself, which became his last refuge). During those last years, he appeared as a conductor a lot; made several concert tours in Europe and USA, performing his compositions with a great success. In 1892, he was elected a corresponding member of Paris Academie des Beaux-Arts; in June 1893, he accepted an honorary doctorate from the University of Cambridge.
Tchaikovsky’s heritage is quite impressive. He is the author of numerous operas, 6 symphonies and other orchestral works, concerti, compositions for piano and chamber ensembles, romances; an important part of his work - three ballets (“The Swan Lake”, “The Sleeping Beauty” and “Nutcracker”) all three be-came extremely po-pular. Tchaikovsky made a real revolution in the ballet art, reforming the traditional divertisement type of ballet and turning it into a true musical drama.
“The Sleeping Beauty” was composed by a commission of the Imperor Theatres director Ivan Vsevolozhsky; Vsevolozhsky and Maurice Petipa were the authors of the libretto (based on the fairy tale by Charles Perrot). The premiere took place on January 3rd, 1890 in the Mariinsky Theatre in St.Petersburg.


In a magical kingdom, a Princess named Aurora is born. King Florestan calls for a grand christening celebration to which all the fairies of the kingdom are invited. As the fairies are granting gifts of grace, beauty, generosity, song and temperament, they are suddenly interrupted by the arrival of wicked fairy, Carabosse; the Master of ceremonies, Catalabute, forgot to invite her in midst of the excitement. He begs to forgive him. With spite and rage, Carabosse tears out his hair and throws it to the rats that are harnessed in her cart; the rats devour it. Then she declares her curse on Princess Aurora: she will one day prick her finger and die. Lilac Fairy casts another spell saying that she will only fall asleep and that she will be awoken after a hundred years by the kiss of a prince. The King orders that all sharp objects should be kept out of the kingdom so Aurora could not hurt herself.
Aurora has grown up. On her twentieth birthday, peasant women come to decorate the palace and garden, using neddles and pins; Catalabute, who discovers it, reads an old edicte and sends them to prison. The King and Queen enter the scene, accompanied by the four princes - suitors for Princess Aurora. They decide not to spoil the Princess’s birthday, so poor women are forgiven.
Aurora appears to dance with the princes; suddenly, she notices an old woman in the midst of the crowd holding a spindle. She clutches it and pricks her finger; Aurora rushes about in panic and finally faints away. Carabosse reveals herself in triumph; four princes rush to her with their swords, but she vanishes. At the same moment, Lilac Fairy appears. She consoles the King and the Queen; Aurora is carried inside the palace. The Lilac Fairy casts a spell on the entire family and court to fall asleep. A magic forest grows around the palace.
One hundred years later, Prince Desire is out hunting with his companions. They entertain themselves, dancing and playing blind-man`s-buff. Afterwards, the Prince sends them away and remains alone. Lilac Fairy appears; she calls a vision of Aurora, and the Prince is entranced by her beauty. He pleads with Lilac Fairy to bring him to see Princess Aurora. The Fairy leads him to the castle to rescue the beautiful Princess in her magic boat.
Inside the castle, every-thing is covered with dust. Aurora is in her bedroom, sleeping on a bed under a ca-nope; the King and the Queen are sleeping in armchairs near by, surrounded by their courtiers. Prince Desire enters, kisses Aurora, and the spell is broken. Everybody wake up.
Prince Desire and Princess Aurora’s wedding. The guests arrive, among them - fairytale characters: Puss in Boots accopanied by a White Cat, Little Red Riding Hood and the Wolf, Cinderella and Prince Fortune, Blueburd and Princess Florina, Tom Thumb and his brothers, and others. The Lilac Fairy bless the newly-weds.

© Classical Records

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