Abdrazakov Releases Debut Solo Album, 'Power Players'
Today brings the U.S. physical release of Ildar Abdrazakov's debut solo recording - Power Players: Russian Arias for Bass (DE 3456) - on the Delos label. Marking the singer's return to his Russian roots, the new album celebrates the iconic bass roles that are the hallmark of his homeland's operatic heritage, offering many of the greatest hits of the Russian bass repertoire. These include the famous Act II aria from Prince Igor, and Power Players serves as a fitting companion to Abdrazakov's title role debut in a new production of Borodin's masterpiece - the first in almost 100 years - at the Metropolitan Opera (Feb 6-March 8).
On Power Players, Abdrazakov explores the dynamics of power through Russia's unparalleled array of plum bass and bass-baritone roles, interpreting such highlights of the genre as Varlaam's Drinking Song and the Coronation Scene from Boris Godunov, "O pole, pole" from Ruslan and Lyudmila, "Lyubvi vsye vozrasti pokorni" from Eugene Onegin, and "Ves' tabar spit" from Aleko, which may heard as a sample track here. The album was recorded with Lithuania's Kaunas City Symphony and Kaunas State Choir under the baton of Constantine Orbelian, whose extensive discography includes collaborations with Sondra Radvanovsky and Dmitri Hvorostovsky, among others. This embrace of the Russian repertory represents something of a coming of age for the 37-year-old Abdrazakov, whose voice has only recently developed the requisite maturity and heft to tackle such weighty fare.
Abdrazakov makes his first appearances in the monumental title role of Prince Igor when Borodin's defining Russian epic returns to the Met for the first time since 1917. With Gianandrea Noseda on the podium, the Met's new production is by Dmitri Tcherniakov, winner of four Golden Mask awards for Best Direction. Abdrazakov headlines all nine performances, including the one on March 1 that will be transmitted to movie theaters worldwide in the Met's celebrated Live in HD series.
Further details of Power Players: Russian Arias for Bass and of Ildar Abdrazakov's upcoming engagements are provided below, and more information is available at the artist's web site: ildarabdrazakov.com.