Mussorgsky: Boris Godunov - Ghiaurov, Fassbaender, Atlantov, Kmentt, Ghazarian, Zednik; Satanowski. Wien, 1976
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Boris Godunov is and always will be a star turn for a great bass and this recording sports one of the best in the form of Nicolai Ghiaurov. He is perfect in this part bringing his megaphone-voice and sensitivity to Russian style. He is supported by one of the greatest casts I have ever seen assembled. Marina is sung by Brigitte Fassbaender, who brings a playful girlish quality mixed with bloodthirsty ambition. Dmitri is sung by a young Vladimir Atlantov. Atlantov in his early years was a force to be reckoned with and he seems very at home singing in his native tongue in this quintessential Russian opera. Veteran tenor Waldemar Kmentt assumes the role of Shuisky and is appropriately sinister. The rest of the cast is a mix of some of the great singers of the Vienna State Opera ensemble. The sound is good although there is a small omission in the Polish act and the Pimen/Boris duet.