Friday, April 10, 2020

PUSHKIN, the Wellspring of Russian Opera

In this pair of podcasts, Dramaturg Jonathan Dean discusses the great Russian writer Alexander Pushkin with Dacia Clay of the Classical Classroom Podcast. And here’s a list of (some) works by Pushkin (poems, plays, stories, novels, in the order he wrote them) that then inspired operas:

1820: Ruslan & Ludmila (Narrative Poem)
Made into Opera: Ruslan & Lyudmila (1842) by Mikhail Glinka

1821: Captive of the Caucasus (Narrative Poem)
Made into Opera: Prisoner of the Caucasus (1883) by César Cui

1824: The Gypsies (Narrative Poem)
Made into Opera: Carmen (1875) by Georges Bizet
Made into Opera: Aleko (1893) by Sergei Rachmaninov
Made into Opera: Zingari (1912) by Ruggero Leoncavallo
Made into other operas, too!

1825: Boris Godunov (Verse Drama)
Made into Opera: Boris Godunov (1872*) by Modest Mussorgsky

1826-32: Rusalka (Unfinished Verse Drama)
Made into Opera: Rusalka (1856) by Alexander Dargomyzhsky

1829: Poltava (Narrative Poem)
Made into Opera: Mazeppa (1884) by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky

1830: Pushkin’s “Little Tragedies”
  • The Stone Guest (Verse Drama)
    Made into Opera: The Stone Guest (1872) by Alexander Dargomyzhsky
  • Mozart & Salieri (Verse Drama)
    Made into Opera: Mozart & Salieri (1898) by Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov
  • The Miserly Knight (Verse Drama)
    Made into Opera: The Covetous Knight (1906) by Sergei Rachmaninov
  • A Feast in Time of Plague (Verse Drama)
    Made into Opera: A Feast in Time of Plague (1901) by César Cui

1825–1832 (published 1833): Eugene Onegin (Novel-Length Narrative Poem)
Made into Opera: Eugene Onegin (1879) by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky

1833: The Little House at Kolomna (Narrative Poem)
Made into Opera: Mavra (1922) by Igor Stravinsky

1834-37: The Moor of Peter the Great (Unfinished Novel)
Made into Opera: The Blackamoor of Peter the Great (1961) by Arthur Lourié

1834: The Queen of Spades (Short Story)
Made into Opera: Die Kartenschlägerin-Pique Dame (1864) by Franz von Suppé
Made into Opera: The Queen of Spades (1890) by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky

1831: Dubrovsky (Unfinished Historical Novel)
Made into Opera: Dubrovsky by Eduard Nápravnik (1895)

1831: The Tale of Tsar Saltan (Narrative Poem)
Made into Opera: The Tale of Tsar Saltan (1900) by Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov

1834: The Tale of the Golden Cockerel (Narrative Poem)
Made into Opera: The Golden Cockerel (1909) by Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov

1836: The Captain’s Daughter (Novel)
Made into Opera: The Captains’ Daughter (1911) by César Cui