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[Repertoire of the Bolshoi Theater 1776-1955 ]
Compiled by V.V. Fedorov
In agreement with the Central Research Library of the Russian Theatrical Performers’ Union
As the center stage of Russian musical and performance culture, the Bolshoi Theater has throughout the years reflected all major phases in the development of Russian and world music and performing arts. This repertoire, left in manuscript form by the author when he died in the 1970s, lists all productions of the Bolshoi Theater from its opening more than 200 years ago through 1955, including operas, ballets, plays and special events. This is the most complete work of its kind ever published. Included are descriptions of many operas and ballets that were previously undiscovered and are otherwise unknown.
Using this catalog, researchers can track the birth and unique development of Russian opera, which stems from the folk comic opera of the late 18th century. (One of the authors who wrote for the Bolshoi Theater was Catherine the Great, whose opera was staged under condition of anonymity.) French, Italian and Austrian operas (including Mozart’s Magic Flute) occupied an important place in the Bolshoi repertoire of the early 19th century. The Bolshoi also organized classical music concerts, including the works of such composers as Handel, Haydn and others. However, the most glorious chapter in the Bolshoi’s history was its ballet performances. Ever since Italian choreographers began staging ballets at the Bolshoi in the late 18th century, ballet played a large part in the repertoire of the theater. In the first quarter of the 19th century alone, 137 ballets were staged. However, the fame of the Bolshoi as a leader in classical ballet really began after the staging of ballets by Marius Petipa, the French choreographer.
Until the early 20th century, the repertoire of the Bolshoi included not only ballet and opera but also vaudeville, comedy and drama. This catalog lists only those productions that contained music. Besides operas, ballets and vaudeville, the catalog lists dramas and melodramas for which special music was written, as well as oratorios performed at the Bolshoi.
The work is organized by year, and each year is divided into opera and ballet. Within each category, there is a chronological listing of performances for the year. Each entry includes the name of the composer and the librettist. For each newly staged opera or ballet, there is information on the subject matter and the main cast members.
The book contains an insert with color illustrations and is fully indexed by composer, performer, librettist, etc.
The materials used in compiling this catalog came from The Bolshoi Theater Museum, TsGALI (Central State Archive for Literature and Arts), and the Central Research Library of the Russian Theatrical Performers’ Union. The compiler also used related materials originally published in the Moskovskie vedomosti.
ISBN: 0-88354-135-1, 2 volumes (16 pp. color insert in Vol.1; Vol. 2 contains indexes), library binding, acid-free paper……………….$250