Andris Nelsons, conductor Kristine Opolais, soprano (Katerina Izmailova) Brenden Gunnell, tenor (Sergei) Peter Hoare, tenor (Zinovy Izmailov)* Günther Groissböck, bass (Boris Izmailov and Ghost of Boris) Michelle Trainor, soprano (Aksinya) Alexandra LoBianco, soprano (Female Convict) Maria Barakova, mezzo-soprano (Sonyetka) Matthew DiBattista, tenor (Teacher) Neal Ferreira, tenor (Foreman) Charles Blandy*, tenor (Foreman & Drunken Guest) Yeghishe Manucharyan*, tenor (Foreman & Coachman) Charles Blandy, tenor (Drunken Guest) Yeghishe Manucharyan, tenor (Coachman) Alexander Kravets, tenor (Shabby Peasant) David Kravitz, baritone (Millhand) Alexandros Stavrakakis, bass (Porter & Policeman) Joo Won Kang, baritone (Steward) Patrick Guetti, bass (Officer and Sentry) Goran Juric, bass (Priest) Anatoli Sivko, bass (Chief of Police) Paata Burchuladze, bass (Old Convict) Tanglewood Festival Chorus James Burton, conductor
SHOSTAKOVICH Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk*
*Sung in Russian with English supertitles
This week's performances by the Tanglewood Festival Chorus are supported by the Alan J. and Suzanne W. Dworsky Fund for Voice and Chorus.
This performance is the most ambitious endeavor in the BSO and Andris Nelsons’ multi-year survey of the works of Dmitri Shostakovich, just as Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk was an immense undertaking for its 24-year-old composer. Shostakovich began the score in late 1930, basing it on Nikolai Leskov’s 1865 novella of the same name; the story is a dark portrayal of Katerina Ismailova, the oppressed, ambitious, and ultimately murderous wife of a provincial merchant. The opera was a worldwide sensation following its 1934 premiere, but after Josef Stalin attended a performance in January 1936, an unsigned Pravda editorial titled “Muddle instead of Music” unequivocally damned the piece and put Shostakovich in real danger. The composer responded by hastily writing the ostensibly heroic, triumphant Fifth Symphony, thus surviving the first of many confrontations with Stalin and the Soviet regime.
Thursday and Friday's performances will end around 10:15pm.