Vladivostok, Primorsky Stage, Chamber Hall

Rachmaninoff – 150. Spring waters

Gala-concert of romances orchestrated by Pavel Smelkov

The Mariinsky Orchestra of the Primorsky Stage
Conductor: Pavel Smelkov
Alena Diyanova (soprano)
Alisa Fedorenko (soprano)
Liliya Kadnikova (soprano)
Anastasiya Kikot (soprano)
Alina Mikhailik (soprano)
Elena Razgulyaeva (soprano)
Olga Zharikova (soprano)
Laura Bustamante (mezzo-soprano)
Irina Kolodyazhnaya (mezzo-soprano)
Tatiana Makarchuk (mezzo-soprano)
Natalia Yakimova (mezzo-soprano)
Ilya Astafurov (tenor)
Dmitry Demidchik (tenor)
Alexei Kostyuk (tenor)
Roman Krukovich (tenor)
Mingiyan Odzhaev (tenor)
Alexei Smirnov (tenor)
Dmitry Migulyov (baritone)
Marat Mukhametzyanov (baritone)
Dmitry Nelasov (baritone)
Alexei Repin (baritone)
Anatoly Badayev (bass)
Vladislav Chibirev (bass)
Yevgeny Plekhanov (bass)
Sergei Pleshivtsev (bass)

Sergei Rachmaninoff
Part I 
“The Muse”. Lyrics by A. Pushkin, Op. 34 No. 1
“C’était en avril” (April! Festive Spring Day). Lyrics by V. Tushnova, TN 52/1
“In the Soul of Each of Us”. Lyrics by A. Korinfsky, Op. 34 No. 2
“In the Silence of the Secret Night”. Lyrics by A. Fet, Op. 4 No. 3
“Were You Hiccupping?”. Lyrics by P. Vyazemsky, TN 54
“I Await You”. Lyrics by М. Davidova, Op. 14 No. 1
“Sing not, Oh Lovely One”. Lyrics by A. Pushkin, Op. 4 No. 4
“How Peaceful”. Lyrics by G. Galina, Op. 21 No. 7
“Two Farewells (Dialogue)”. Lyrics by A. Koltsov, Op. 26 No. 4
“Night is Sorrowful”. Lyrics by I. Bunin, Op. 26 No. 12 
“The Ring”. Lyrics by A. Koltsov, Op. 26 No. 14
“Fate” (To the Symphony No. 5 by Beethoven). Lyrics by A. Apukhtin, Op. 21 No. 1 

Part II
“At the Gates of the Holy Cloister”. Lyrics by M. Lermontov, TN 50/1
“It Cannot Be”. Lyrics by A. Maykov, Op. 34 No. 7
“Oh, Do Not Grieve”. Lyrics by A. Apukhtin, Op. 14 No. 8
“Lilacs”. Lyrics by E. Beketova, Op. 21 No. 5
“At My Window”. Lyrics by G. Galina, Op. 26 No. 10 
“Daisies”. Lyrics by I. Severyanin, Op. 38 No. 3
“A Dream”. Lyrics by A. Pleshcheyev, Op. 8 No. 5
“Christ is Risen”. Lyrics by D. Merezhkovsky, Op. 26 No. 6
“The Raising of Lazarus”. Lyrics by A. Khomyakov, Op. 34 No. 6
“The Herald”. Lyrics by A. Fet, Op. 34 No. 11
“Vocalise”, Op. 34 No. 14 (in the composer’s orchestration)
“Arion”. Lyrics by A. Pushkin, Op. 34 No. 5
“Spring Torrents”. Lyrics by F. Tyutchev, Op. 14 No. 11

About the Concert

Romances by Sergei Vasilyevich Rachmaninoff are a whole world full of subtle colors, strong feelings and great symbols. In vocal lyrics, he was a true successor of the traditions both of Tchaikovsky and The Five. Besides, due to his own inspiring melodicism, brilliant pianism and sophisticated harmonies, Rachmaninoff has become not just a composer of works for solo voice and piano but also a creator of the greatest samples of ensemble music with a vocalist and a pianist turning into an organic unity and an equal partnership.

All the above makes setting for an orchestra and performing Rachmaninoff’s romances by a big ensemble a complicated but very interesting task. When I arranged his romances for orchestra, it was primarily important for me to enrich Rachmaninoff’s chamber music with tunes of a symphony orchestra in order to translate senses and embody images of his original compositions to the utmost. Rachmaninoff himself could artistically write compositions for an orchestra but made arrangement of only one his well-known romance “Vocalise”, Op. 34 No. 14, which, no doubt, will be included in our program.

While instrumenting his other romances, I certainly followed Rachmaninoff’s principles and techniques of arrangement for orchestra. Somewhere I reproduced his style precisely; somewhere I invented something new to update his facture. My longstanding work resulted in 25 romances. Many of them have already been performed by the Mariinsky Orchestra of the Primorsky Stage, some of them had been earlier performed in Saint Petersburg, and several romances have been specially instrumented for our gala concert.

While making the program, I was not guided by a chronological or contrasting principle but tried to unite some romances to form a small semantic group or a dramatic arch. For instance, the concert is to begin with “The Muse” romance after Alexander Puchkin’s poem which depicts the poet in his youth and to end with “Arion” romance – it has also been created on Pushkin’s poetic text – which tells us about the author’s loneliness and storms of life. I managed to unite romances of meeting and parting, ways of spiritual improvement and simple landscape sketches, for example, sketches of Rachmaninoff’s favorite flowers such as lilacs, bird cherry or daisies.

Pavel Smelkov

Age category 6+

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