The Invisible City of Kitezh, completed in 1905, is a remarkable opera that fuses folklore, mysticism and realism. Its subject is the story of the advancing Mongol army's entry to Great Kitezh and the city's subsequent miraculous survival.
Rejecting archaisms and the more religiously inclined suggestions of his librettist, Rimsky-Korsakov sought to create an opera that 'is contemporary and even fairly advanced'. It is therefore through-composed, hinting at times at Wagnerian procedure, and flooded with the composer's rich, apt and brilliant orchestral palette, fully supportive of the powerful vocal writing.
From 2001 until 2009 Alexander Vedernikov was Music Director and Chief Conductor of the Bolshoy Theatre. Under his direction the orchestra of the Bolshoy toured extensively, including Athens, Hamburg and Paris in February 2008, and for a season of opera and ballet at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden.
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