Voices from Russia

Saturday, 15 December 2012

Vishenvskaya… A Name that’ll Always be Remembered

rostropovich_vishnevskaya

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Final Scene of Yevgeni Onegin, with Georg Ots

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This is Tchaikovsky‘s romans Колыбельная (Kolybelnaya: Cradle Song)

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Casta Diva from Bellini‘s Norma

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 On Friday, the celebrated Russian opera singer Galina Vishnevskaya, who died on 11 December at the age of 86, was buried in Moscow. The burial ceremony began at 13.00 MSK at Novodevichy Cemetery. Vishnevskaya’s grave is near that of her husband, the great cellist Mstislav Rostropovich. By Orthodox tradition, before the funeral, the farewell ceremony was in the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour. Before she died, the singer wanted to donate to the cathedral a treasured icon of St Nicholas the Wonderworker, but she didn’t do it. On the day of the farewell ceremony, her daughters Olga and Yelena did it for her.

Well-known opera singer Lyubov Kazkarnovskaya said, “The legendary couple of Vishnevskaya and Rostropovich will be remembered for generations as a symbol of devotion to Art. A fabulous generation, which knew how to serve Music and Theatre, and which knew the price of every single note, is leaving. She lived at the limit of love for her art”. Rostropovich and Vishnevskaya set the bar high, not only in their art, but also in their social life. In the 1970s, without hesitation, although they understood that they’d pay a price for it, they supported writer Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, when the authorities were harassing him. Solzhenitsyn’s widow Natalya said, “I highly value the close friendship between our families and I’ll always be grateful to Mstislav Rostropovich and Galina Vishnevskaya, as they helped Aleksandr in the most difficult period of his life”.

In their irksome exile, Vishneskaya wrote a book entitled Galina. She said, “I found salvation in it. I needed to tell people what happened to us and why”. The singer turned out to be an excellent storyteller. In later life, she also became known as a brilliant dramatic actress; she played the main role in the film Aleksandra by Aleksandr Sokurov. She played a common middle-aged Russian woman, who came to visit her grandson, who was an officer who serving in Chechnya. The film’s producer, Andrei Sigle, recalled, “She didn’t hesitate to go on location shooting, even though it was still a rather dangerous time there. It was also very hot, 56 degrees (133 degrees Fahrenheit), and it was very windy. However, she was very strong and set an example for us”.

The renowned composer Rodion Shchedrin came to Moscow to celebrate his birthday, but unfortunately faced this great loss, saying, “To me, Galina Pavlovna’s passing is a personal loss as we were very close friends throughout our lives. It’s a very bitter loss. Like the poet Voznesensky said, ‘We’re leaving, and this edict is everlasting’”. The Centre of Opera Signing, established by Vishnevskaya in Moscow ten years ago, has already brought up many talented singers. One of them was Badri Maisuradze, soloist of the Bolshoi Theatre, who said, “The generations of singers who were guided by her and Mstislav Rostropovich will never forget them. They’ll always be remembered”.

14 December 2012

Voice of Russia World Service

 http://english.ruvr.ru/2012_12_14/98036486/

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Sunday, 15 June 2008

15 June 2008. A Shot of Culture, if you please…

Programmes of the year of France in Russia and the year of Russia in France to be presented in Paris

Muriel Mayette, director of the Comédie-Française

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The programmes of the Year of France in Russia and the Year of Russia in France shall be presented in Paris later today. Under an agreement between the leaders of the two countries, large-scale cultural events shall be staged simultaneously in 2010. An exhibition entitled Holy Russia in Paris shall be the culmination of the event. A tour of the Comédie-Française theatre troupe in Russia is one of the French offerings.

10 June 2008

http://www.ruvr.ru/main.php?lng=eng&q=28229&cid=51&p=10.06.2008

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Painting by Natalia Goncharova fetched record price at Russian art auction at Sotheby’s

A Still Life with Peonies

Natalia Goncharova

1900s-10s?

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A Still Life with Fruits by the early-20th-century artist Natalia Goncharova fetched a record price of 2.28 million pounds (105.71 million roubles. 2.881 million euros. 4.446 million USD) at yesterday’s Russian art auction at Sotheby’s. The Winter Landscape by Ivan Aivazovsky went for 555,000 pounds (25.742 million roubles. 702,329 euros. 1.082 million USD), seven times that of the start-up price. Zinaida Serebryakova’s Nude was sold for more than a million pounds (46.383 million roubles. 1.265 million euros. 1.95 million USD), about five times higher than expected. The auction’s organisers say it pushed a plank for Russian art sales further up.

10 June 2008

http://www.ruvr.ru/main.php?lng=eng&q=28266&cid=51&p=10.06.2008

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The Prince Lobanov-Rostovsky collection bought for the Konstantin Palace

Aleksei Lobanov-Rostovsky (1824-96), diplomat, scholar, and art collector

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The charitable foundation that funded the recent restoration of the Konstantin Palace near St Petersburg bought a world-famous collection of Russian art, namely the collection of Prince Lobanov-Rostovsky. The collection is the second world-famous collection of Russian artworks that’s due to be put on display at the Konstantin Palace. Last year, the Palace obtained the collection of Mstislav Rostropovich and Galina Vishnevskaya.

10 June 2008

http://www.ruvr.ru/main.php?lng=eng&q=28240&cid=87&p=10.06.2008

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10th International Beer Festival due in Moscow

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Not exactly from this festival… a funny beer ad, though.

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The 10th International Beer Festival is due in Moscow from the 14th to the 22nd of this month. Guests to the event are welcome to taste up to 130 sorts of beer by more than 20 breweries. The visitors will be likewise welcome to a retrospective exhibition of beer and to a beer museum featuring a great number of exhibits. Another highlight of the event is a firework festival, a highlight that’ll be around every day until the beer festival is over.

10 June 2008

http://www.ruvr.ru/main.php?lng=eng&q=28240&cid=87&p=10.06.2008

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Moscow prepared to play host to next year’s Eurovision music contest

Yevgeny Plyushchenko (1982- ), Olympic championship figure-skater

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2009 Eurovision contestant, Sakis Rouvas (1972- ) from Greece

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The Moscow city government said that the city is prepared to play host to next year’s Eurovision international music contest, if Moscow is chosen as the venue for the event. Russia qualified for the right to host the competition following Russian singer Dima Bilan’s recent victory in Belgrade. Dima performed the song Believe Me accompanied by dancing by the world-famous Olympic champion figure-skater, Yevgeny Plyushchenko, and the playing of Hungarian violinist Edvin Marton, who played a Stradivarius, ensured him a record 272 points. So far, the venue for Eurovision-2009 hasn’t yet been determined. The likely candidates are Moscow, St Petersburg, and Sochi.

11 June 2008

http://www.ruvr.ru/main.php?lng=eng&q=28300&cid=51&p=11.06.2008

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Pushkin Museum shall open an exhibition in Tokyo of pictures by Rodchenko

Dance: An Objectless Composition

Aleksandr Rodchenko

1915

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At the beginning of 2010, Moscow’s Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts shall treat art lovers in Tokyo to an exhibition of pictures by the Russian avant-garde painter, graphic artist and photographer Aleksandr Rodchenko. The Tokyo newspaper Asahi is expected to offer its sponsorship for the project at talks in Moscow next month. This was confirmed by the chief curator of the Pushkin Museum, Dr Irina Antonova.

11 June 2008

http://www.ruvr.ru/main.php?lng=eng&q=28314&cid=51&p=11.06.2008

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International band festival in St Petersburg dedicated to Russia Day

Golubiye Bereti (The Blue Berets), A Russian Army rock band

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An international brass band festival in St Petersburg is dedicated to Russia Day. The combined orchestra will march in a grand procession along the Nevsky Prospekt to lend a festive atmosphere to the city on Thursday, 12 June. Last on the holiday agenda are several extravaganza concerts at sports complexes and concert halls. Also on Thursday, the Palace Square in front of the Winter Palace shall host a gala concert of Russian pop stars to the accompaniment of military bands.

11 June 2008

http://www.ruvr.ru/main.php?lng=eng&q=28292&cid=87&p=11.06.2008

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Open-air jazz festival kicks off near Moscow

Charlie Hunter (1967- ), great American jazzman

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More than 50 well-known jazz bands from different countries shall perform at an open-air jazz festival that kicked off at the Arkhangelskoye estate and museum near Moscow today. The program covers all genres, swing, lounge, funk, ethno-jazz, fusion, and even jazz-rock. Russia is represented by Igor and Oleg Butman, Aleksei Kozlov with his Arsenal band, and the Billy’s Band group. There will be a competition of young jazzmen. Jazz lovers are in for a real treat, an exclusive concert by a legendary American jazz ensemble, the Charlie Hunter Trio.

12 June 2008

http://www.ruvr.ru/main.php?lng=eng&q=28339&cid=51&p=12.06.2008

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Noah’s Ark International Film Festival opens in Chechen capital

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The Noah’s Ark International Film Festival opens in the Chechen capital of Grozny later today. It is aimed at bringing closer people of various nationalities, faiths, and culture. Among the guests of the festival are Hollywood stars Mark Dacascos and Armand Assante. The jury has selected 44 films from 21 countries. The organisers hope to stage the festival annually.

13 June 2008

http://www.ruvr.ru/main.php?lng=eng&q=28353&cid=51&p=13.06.2008

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Memorial to Tsaritsa Yekaterina Velikaya unveiled in Sevastopol

An Equestrian Portrait of Grand Princess Yekaterina Alekseyevna (later Tsaritsa Yekaterina Velikaya)

Georg Christoph Grooth

1746

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After two days of picketing by City Hall deputies and Cossacks, a memorial to Tsaritsa Yekaterina Velikaya was unveiled in Sevastopol on Sunday. City Hall initiated the move despite Kiev’s unhappiness with the installation, which was initially expected on Saturday. Sevastopol was founded as the main base for the Russian Black Sea Fleet, which recently marked its 225th anniversary.

15 June 2008

http://www.ruvr.ru/main.php?lng=eng&q=28393&cid=51&p=15.06.2008

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Russian writer grabbed one of the most prestigious European literary prizes

Lyudmila Ulitskaya (1943- ), Russian novelist

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Russian writer Lyudmila Ulitskaya grabbed one of the most prestigious European literary prizes, the Grinzane Cavour Prize, for her novel Sincerely Yours, Shurik. The awards ceremony was held on Saturday in a medieval castle located on the outskirts of the Italian city of Torino. Previously, Ulitskaya’s other works were also much admired by the reading public in Italy, whose youth jury jointly with students from MGU and St Petersburg State University awarded Ulitskaya the prize.

15 June 2008

http://www.ruvr.ru/main.php?lng=eng&q=28394&cid=51&p=15.06.2008

Voice of Russia World Service

Wednesday, 14 May 2008

Exhibition of Russian Art from the Rostropovich-Vishnevskaya Collection Opens Near St Petersburg

Galina Vishnevskaya (1926- ) and Maestro Mstislav Rostropovich (1927-2007)

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An exhibition of Russian art collected by the renowned Russian musicians Mstislav Rostropovich and Galina Vishnevskaya opens today at Konstantinovsky Palace outside St Petersburg. The grand Konstantinovsky Palace, once belonging to the Russian imperial family, is now a residence of the Russian president. It regularly hosts events of national and international importance and functions as a museum. Maestro Rostropovich’s widow, the celebrated opera diva Galina Vishnevskaya, approved of the exhibition venue. Konstantinovsky Palace is a perfect place for the display, she said, its premises allow for a most remarkable showing.

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Mstislav Rostropovich performing Popper’s Dance of the Elves

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The collection of 17th to early 20th century Russian art collected by the celebrity couple consists of nearly 900 items, including artworks by Karl Bryullov, Ilya Repin, and Valentin Serov, samples of antique furniture, and applied art works and jewellery. The collection of porcelain alone presents enough material for an encyclopaedia. Maestro Rostropovich and Ms Vishnevskaya started the collection in Paris, which was their home from the mid-70s, when they left the Soviet Union, until the 90s, when they returned. After the death of Maestro Rostropovich in 2007, Ms Vishnevskaya prepared the collection for sale at Sotheby’s, as was previously agreed with her husband, but, she was stopped by Russian businessman Alisher Usmanov, who bought the lot complete and presented it to the state.

12 May 2008

Olga Bugrova

Voice of Russia World Service

http://www.ruvr.ru/main.php?lng=eng&q=26916&cid=62&p=12.05.2008

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