Modest Mussorgskij (1839–1881) Boris Godunow (Version of 1908)
A National Music Drama in 4 Acts and Prologue arranged by Nikolaj Rimskij-Korsakow Text: Modest Mussorgskij
solos: SSMez(S)MezMezAATTTTTTTBarBarBBBBBBB – choir: SSAATTBB. child choir – 3(picc).2(cor ang).3(B-clar).2. – 220.127.116.11. – timp.perc.(4) – hp – pno – str
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Text by the composer after Alexander Pushkins "Dramatic Chronic of Tsars Boris and Grishka Otrepiev and Nikolai Karamsins "History of the Russian Empire
Translation: German (M. Lippold/H. Möller), Engl. (E. Agate), French (M. Delines/L. Laloy), Ital. (Palermi/Macchi/Magni), Span.
Place and time: Moscow and environment, Court of the Novodevichy Monastery, Tshudov Monastery, Roadside Inn near the Lithuanian frontier, Tsars Chamber in Kremlin, Castle of Sandomir, Kromy Forest, 1598-1605
Characters: Boris Godunov (baritone) - Feodor and Xenia, his Children (mezzo-soprano, soprano) - Wet Nurse Xenias (alto) - Prince Wassily Ivanovich Shuisky (tenor) - Andrej Schtschelkalov, Secret Scribe (baritone) - Pimen, Chronic Scribe (bass) - Grigory Otrepjev, later Dmitry (tenor) - Marina Mnischek, Wojewoden von Sandomirs Daughter (mezzo-soprano) - Rangoni, Secret Jew (bass) - Varlaam and Missail, escaped Monks (bass, tenor) -Roadside Inn Landlady (mezzo-soprano) - A Simpleton (tenor) - Nikititsh, Church Advocate (bass) - a Boyar (tenor) - Boyar Chrushtschov (tenor) - Mitjucha, Farmer (baritone) - Lowitzki and Tschernjakowski, Jesuits (basses)- 2 Farmer's Wives (soprano, alto) - 2 Farmers (tenor, bass)
Because of its massive cuts, Nikolay Rimsky-Korsakovs arrangement is only worth mentioning for historical purposes. The second version of 1908 is characterized by radical changes of the dramatic-musical structure, the orchestration and the musical text (additions, smoothing out of the frequent changes of meter). This arrangement can practically be considered as an independent work.