[Met Performance] CID:95990

Boris Godunov
Metropolitan Opera House, Fri, March 25, 1927

In Italian

Boris Godunov (77)
Modest Mussorgsky | Modest Mussorgsky
Boris Godunov
Fyodor Chaliapin

Prince Shuisky
Angelo Badà

Ezio Pinza

Armand Tokatyan

Marion Telva

Paolo Ananian

Alfio Tedesco

Louis D'Angelo

George Cehanovsky

Ina Bourskaya

Giordano Paltrinieri

Ellen Dalossy

Louise Hunter

Kathleen Howard

Millo Picco

Vincenzo Reschiglian

Vincenzo Bellezza

Armando Agnini

Set Designer
Alexander Golovine

Set Designer
Alexander Benois

Costume Designer
Ivan Bilibine

Orchestration by Nicolai Rimsky-Korsakov
Translation by M.Delines, E. Palermi, G. Pardo
Synopsis of Scenes
Act I, Scene 1: The wall of Novodievitchi Convent, in the Great Environs of Moscow
Act I, Scene 2: A cell in the Convent of Miracles
Act I, Scene 3: The square between the two Cathedrals of the Assumption and of the Archangels
Act II, Scene 1: An inn on the frontier of Lithuania
Act II, Scene 2: Apartments of the Czar in the Kremlin at Moscow
Act II, Scene 3: Garden of the Castle of Michek
Act III, Scene 1: The forest of Kromy
Act III, Scene 2: Hall of the Duma in the Kremlin
Benois designed only the Polish Scene.
Chaliapin always sang Boris in Russian.
Boris Godunov received three performances this season.

Review 1:

Review of Mary F. Watkins in the New York Herald Tribune

Packed House Hears Chaliapin at Best in 'Boris Godunoff'

General Excellence Marks Performance of Opera With Russian Winning Personal Ovation at End

Feodor Chaliapin stepped back again last evening into that frame which more than any other at once embraces, enhances and exposes the full measure of his genius. He sang "Boris Godunoff," and before the Metropolitan matinee of "Tristan und Isolde" was out people were already standing in line for admission to the Moussorgsky opera.

It is altogether an amazing performance, this impersonation. It is colossally conceived and built from within, and its externals of stature and magnificence fuse with it until at moments, as in the apparition scene or the death, the impact is almost staggering. He was in superb voice, and such transgressions as might be observed were obviously a matter of direct choice in the manner of "artistic" license which this artist often permits himself.

An entire production in Italian did not alienate his single adherence to the soft richness of his own tongue, but rather did this individual integrity to the original work slightly shift the others out of key. It was, however, a performance of general excellence. Mr. Bellezza, conducting it for the first time here, threw himself upon the score with immense vitality, but perhaps, and quite naturally, he lent his greatest emphasis to that aspect of the work which admits an Italian forebear. The chorus, real star of the evening, acquitted itself with glory, and the principals in the cast injected both freshness and enthusiasm into their work.

Miss Hunter, less plausibly boyish than as Yniold, was nevertheless an appealing Czarevitch, Miss Dalossy was appropriately lachrymose as Xenia, and Miss Howard perfectly within the spirit of the old Nurses's droll delineation. Miss Telva was acceptable in the brief scene of the Polonaise as Marina, and Mme. Bourskaya contributed one of her finely wrought bits of character in the portrait of the Innkeeper.

A better Dimitri than Mr. Tokatyan might be imagined, for his conception is somewhat tentative and flat, but the Schuisky of Mr. Bada is one of the most conspicuous achievements in this artist's almost inexhaustible museum of parts. Others who contributed with sufficient skill were Messrs. Cehanovsky, Pinza, Ananian, Paltrinieri, Tedesco (the Simpleton), D'Angelo, Picco and Reschiglian.There was an enormous house and a personal ovation for the great Russian which made the gilded walls ring.

Search by season: 1926-27

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