“Our love to Tchaikovsky, to his splendid music, proving its immortality, passes from one century to another, from generation to generation”. (D. Shostakovich)
The premiere of the Fifth Symphony by P. Tchaikovsky conducted by the author took place in Petersburg on November 5, 1888, at the concert of Philharmonic Society. On December 10 it was performed in Moscow, at the concert of Russian Music Society. In both capitals new symphony was a great success with the audience, however the critics’ opinion was not so unanimous. Symphonism of Tchaikovsky has lyric and dramatic, argumentative character. The theme of the person’s struggle for the right of happiness is the leading in his creative work. Almost in eleven years after creating the Fourth Symphony Tchaikovsky turned to the theme which agitated him. Now he wants to solve it in another way: to take up a struggle with fate haunting the person on his way to happiness and to vanquish it. According to Tchaikovsky, the symphony creating was “music confession of the soul” for him.
In 1912 Rachmaninoff became interested in the verse The Bells by Edgar Poe in translation by K. Balmont. Being infatuated with bell-ringing since childhood and reproducing it in his compositions he begins writing a vocal and symphonic poem in four parts which reflects all walk in life of a person: from joyous youth full of hopes to death. At the same time symbolism, so significant in Poe’s work is relegated to the background. As one Rachmaninoff’s creative work analyst noticed, the images of the poem “obtained Russian “flesh” and “blood”, preserving its generalized philosophical and poetical sense” . For the first time The Bells were performed by choir, soloists and Mariinsky Theatre Orchestra led by the author, on November 30, 1913 in Petersburg. The premiere in Moscow took place on February 8, 1914 with participation of soloists and choir from the Bolshoy Theatre. The success in both capitals was enormous. Poem The Bells belongs to outstanding Russian musical compositions prior to the First World War which reflected alarming and tense attitudes of the beginning of the century.
Irina Samoylova – soloist of “Helikon-Opera” Moscow Theatre. Grand Prix winner of the IV All-Russian Bello Voce Competition and XXV International Competition Luis Sigall in Chile (1998), winner of the II International Competition Tomaz Alkaide in Portugal (2000), prize winner of the Belvedere Competition (2003, Vienna, Austria). She graduated from Russian Gnesins Academy of Music (1999, class of Professor, People’s Artist of Russia G. Oleinichenko). Since 2001 – trainee, since 2000 – soloist of the Bolshoy Theatre of Russia. In spring 2003 made her debut at the “Helikon-Opera” performing the part of Norina in the opera Don Pascuale by G. Donizetti. In 2005 became a soloist of the “Helikon-Opera”.In 2006 sang the part of Kseniya in the opera Boris Godunov by M. Mussorgsky in Brussels (Belgium). Participated in the number of prestigious opera festivals: W.A. Mozart Festival in La Coruna (Spain, 2006, part of Countess Adel in opera The Count Ory by G. Rossini, G. Rossini Festival in Pesaro (Italy, 2008, part of Cleone in opera Ermione by G. Rossini), Wexford Opera Festival (Ireland, 2008, part of Snow Maiden in opera The Snow Maiden by N. Rimsky-Korsakov). In 2009 participated in gala-concert to the 100th anniversary of Dyagilev Seasons (Monaco, Monte-Carlo). Performed in Austria, Bulgaria, Great Britain, Spain, Italy, China, Monaco, France, Chile.
Vsevolod Grivnov – soloist of the State Academic Bolshoy Theatre of Russia. In 1990-1996 he was a soloist of “Novaya Opera” Moscow Theatre, in 1994-96 – soloist of Nice Opera (France), in 1996-99 – soloist of Danish Royal Opera. Since 2001 performs at the Bolshoy Theatre. The singer’s repertoire includes parts of Vodemon (Iolanta by Tchaikovsky), Lensky (Evgeny Onegin by Tchaikovsky), Andrey (Mazepa by Tchaikovsky), Richard (A Masked Ball by Verdi), Alfred (Traviata by Verdi), Fenton (Falstaff by Verdi), Jose (Carmen by Bizet), Rudolph (Louise Miller by Verdi), etc. Tenor parts in operas by Stravinsky, Ninth Symphony by Beethoven, Requiem by Verdi, Cantata The Bells by Rachmaninoff and in other compositions.
Elchin Azizov – soloist of the State Academic Bolshoy Theatre of Russia, Honoured Artist of Azerbaijan. Prize winner of the III International Bulbul Competition (IV prize, Baku, 2005), winner of the Medal of International Music Workers Union (Moscow, 2006), of the Intellect-2007 Prize (Baku, 2007), II International Galina Vishnevskaya Opera Singers Competition. His repertoire includes parts of Ibn-Hakia (Iolanta by Tchaikovsky), Escamillo (Carmen by Bizet), Leandr (Love to Three Oranges by Prokofiev), Dr Falke (Die Fledermaus by Strauss), Gryaznoy (The Tsar’s Bride by Rimsky-Korsakov), Tomsky (The Queen of Spades by Tchaikovsky), Amonasro (Aida by Verdi), Evgeny Onegin, Germont (Traviata by Verdi), etc.