No one can beat the Russians at arranging a full blown dramatic Lying in State and Funeral Service. Galina Vishnevskaya, Russian opera singer who died this week, and who was awarded countless awards by the Soviety Union,is receiving full honours. Probably very different from the Swiss opera singer, Lisa Della Casa, who also died this week.
Russian soprano opera singer who was married to cellist Mstislav Rostropovich – born 25 October 1926 – died 11 December, 2012 . She was named People’s Artist of the USSR in 1966. They left the Soviet Union in 1974.
In her long career she sang many great operatic roles including Violetta, Tosca, Cio-cio-san, Leonore and Cherubino. Benjamin Britten wrote the soprano role in his War Requiem (completed 1962) specially for her.
More photographs by Nigel Luckhurst of Vishnevskaya and Rostropovich at Aldeburgh available on our website at www.lebrecht.co.uk
Yevgeny Nikitin, Russian opera singer, was prpearing to take the lead rol in Wagner’s ‘The Flying Dutchman’ in this year’s Bayreuth Festival. Nikitin is a former heavy metal singer and rumjmer. The scandal was unleashed on 20 July by a television programme which showed highlights from Nikitin’s heavy metal past. In the footage he is playing bare chested and many of his tattoos are visible, including one that appears to be a swastika – he has since attempted to cover up the tattoo with a different image. ‘I had them done in my youth,’ Nikitin said, ‘It was a big mistake and I wish I’d never done it.’ After a newspaper asked the Bayreuth press office about the tattoo, Nikitin was called in for talks with the festival director. He later announced he was quitting the production.
The Bayreuth Festival was established in 1872 by Richard Wagner, notorious for his his article Das Judenthum in der Musik (Judaism in Music) which attacks Jews in general and composers Meyerbeer and Mendlessohn in particular. Hitler was a great Wagner fan and the Bayreuth Festival became linked with the Third Reich, due also to Winifred Wagner’s (widown of Siegfried, Richard Wagner’s son) unbounded admiration for the dictator. Nikitin’s replacement is the Korean singer Samuel Youn.
Daniil Trifonov, the 21 year old Russian pianist and winner of the 2011 International Tchaikovsky and Artur Rubinstein competitions, performed at the Wigmore Hall in London last night. Looking like the young Liszt and clearly enjoying what he was doing, he performed a spectacular Chopin 12 Études Opus 10. It was as if his fingers were transformed into molten liquid as they danced and spun along the keyboard of his Fazoli piano. The audience went wild and Trifanov responded with some amazing encores. Don’t miss an opportunity to see this outstanding and brilliant young musician perform.
Daniil Trifonov performing at gala concert for winners of the 14th P.I. Tchaikovsky International Competition in the Great Hall of the Moscow Conservatory, Russia. 1 July 2011
Pushkin, Russian poet and novelist, is renowned for his huge contribution to Russian literature and language. Many of his works formed the basis of operas such as The Queen of Spades and Eugene Onegin by Tchaikovsky; Boris Godunov by Mussorgsky; Ruslan and Ludmila by Glinka and the Tale of Tsar Sultan and the Tale of the Golden Cockerel by Rimsky-Korsakov. In Russia a play has been written based on Pushkin’s letters. Famous stories include The Tale of the Dead Princess and Seven Knights.