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Re: [ARSCLIST] MELODIYA DISCOGRAPHY - was Medtner playing his 3rd Piano Concerto

Mike Richter wrote:
Did MK have a role in the variant versions offered in the USSR and for export? There are several operas in which a major role, often the title role, was dubbed by different artists for domestic and foreign sale. It seemed to me that someone - perhaps MK - decided in 1948 to keep Reizen a secret, so had Boris's part redone by Pirogov for foreign release in 1949.


I don't know about keepng Reizen a secret and exporting Pirogov, because BOTH of them are on the Borodin Prince Igor set I have sitting here!! I don't know when Igor was recorded, but this LP release is numbered in the late 1950s. For the Boris you mention, you are talking about 1948 and 49 which is the 78 era and the Stalin era. Anything is possible to have happened under Stalin, but I don't think they were keeping Reizen a secret because he kept on recording and his records were issued.

Looking things up a little, it does seem that the two Boris recordings were made a year apart, Reizen in 48 and Pirogov in 49, but the first time the two were "mixed together" was not under Stalin but in 1975. One person said it was because the Reizen recording was only of the scenes Boris is in, but some feel he is a stronger voice, so in 1975 they expanded the fragments with the scenes from the Pirogov recording. Nobody seems to be claiming that the 1975 Melodiya LP was for export and that there also was a domestic-only issue with Pirogov. It would help if some of these commentators had given the record numbers for what they were talking about.

What I can tell you is this. I have the hardbound MK catalog "Soviet Long Playing Records 1965-66" This is not a discography because it list only the LPs that are in the export catalog as of 1965-66. So it does not list things that are deleted, nor things which have not been approved for export. It lists a four disc Boris set with Pirogov, D 05836 thru 43, so this set was exported. (There is also a set in mono and stereo by Petrov, so that is their preferred set at this point.)

In the "fragment" section they list these items:

Boris' Monologue (from the Prologue)
      M. Reizen    D 02940-l  (records with one leading 0 are 12-inch)

Varlaam's Song (Act I) M. Reizen D 00014083-4 (records with three leading 0's are 7-inch)

Boris' Monologue (Act II)
      A. Pirogov  D 2970-1  (records with no leading 0 are 10-inch)
      M. Reizen  D 02940-1

Scene of Boris' Death (Act IV)
      M. Reizen  D 02940-1

There is no indication of a complete Boris by Reizen, only these excerpts, but if there had one it might have already been deleted, it might not have come out yet on LP, or it might not have been available for export. But at least in the mid-60s neither Pirogov nor Reizen were being jeot secret.

None of the commentaries include the Soviet numbers of either the 78s or the LPs. That might help explain things more, especially if there are LPs not listed for export by MK or deleted. Do you have the matrix numbers for the two groups of Boris 78 sides?

Mike Biel mbiel@xxxxxxxxx

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