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Remembering Dmitri Hvorostovsky

The Russian operatic baritone Dmitri Hvorostovsky passed away this week following a two-and-a-half-year battle with brain cancer. He was 55. Here are some highlights from his distinguished career:

In the aria, Ja vas lyublyu, from the second act of Tchaikovsky’s The Queen of Spades, Prince Yeletsky pours out his love for Liza while lamenting her inability to trust him fully. Listen to the way this aria moves from majestically soaring passion to the depths of despair as the final bars fade into the lowest, gloomiest register of the orchestra:

Hvorostovsky was hailed for his performance of the title role in Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin. Here, he performs the final scene with Renée Fleming:

Here is another dark, moody aria from Russian opera- Boris’ monologue (Dastig ya vishey vlasti) from the second act of Mussorgsky’s Boris Godunov:

At his eclectic blog, Medicine and Opera, Neil Kurtzman wrote that Hvorostovsky “is probably the best Verdi baritone now active.” Kurtzman provides some fascinating background on Era Tu from the third act of Verdi’s A Masked Ball. 

Here is Hvorostovsky’s suave performance of La ci darem la mano from the first act of Mozart’s Don Giovanni:

Recordings

  • Dmitri Hvorostovsky’s complete discography iTunes

Photograph by Chris Lee

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4 Responses to Remembering Dmitri Hvorostovsky

  1. Mary McGagh November 24, 2017 at 8:32 am #

    I was profoundly saddened to hear this news. Dimitrii is a great loss to the world of music!

  2. Shirley Battie November 25, 2017 at 11:01 am #

    I too was so sad to hear the news. No mention of it though in the media.

  3. Mirella Nalder November 29, 2017 at 5:02 am #

    I still cannot believe that Dmitri has gone. Such a powerful and equally suave voice. Still young and full of life. He will be missed and as Shirley Battie wrote, virtually no mention on the press: why should we read every single nonsense of useless “celebrities” and be denied a meaningful obituary on a great singer. Where is culture disappearing to?

    • Mary November 29, 2017 at 7:44 am #

      Prince Harry’s engagement to an American divorced actress 3 years older than he sells more copy and thus more advertising.
      I do think those of us interested in the arts were well aware of Dimitri’s untimely death. He is a profound loss to the world of music.

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