Ivan Petrov


Born: February 29, 1920; Irkutsk, Soviet Union   Died: December 27, 2003  
Born with a German name, Ivan Petrov assumed the role of quintessential Russian bass during the age between Mark Reizen and Alexander Pirogov and Evgeny Nesterenko, who followed a generation after. Endowed with a generous instrument -- solid, long-ranged, and refined -- Petrov attained first rank among the low-voiced singers at Moscow's Bolshoi and held his position for more than two decades. The onset of diabetes caused his retirement at age 50, Read more but not before he had left an imposing recorded legacy. Petrov's family were naturalized Germans, resident in Russia under the name of Krause for several generations. His father had descended from a tradition of engineers and scientists, but singing, too, had been an integral aspect in the succeeding generations of the Krause family. After a childhood in Siberia during which he spent in his favorite pastimes of volleyball and football, Johann Krause moved with his parents to Moscow in 1936. The specter of German ambition overshadowed the Soviet Union at the time and those bearing German surnames were suspect. Hence, the family chose a new name and the teenager became known as Ivan Petrov. Through his studies at the Moscow Conservatory, Petrov's bass voice began growing noticeably in size and compass. At age 19, he was already working on arias of advanced difficulty; the following year, he was engaged by tenor Ivan Kozlovsky and the Moscow Philharmonic Society. He joined the ensemble in tours of operas presented in concert format. In 1941 alone, after his country was under attack by Germany, Petrov participated in many of the hundreds of performances given for soldiers both on front lines and recuperating in hospitals. In 1942, Petrov auditioned for the Bolshoi Theater and was engaged, becoming a member of the Soviet Union's most prestigious opera theater at the age of 22. In 1947, Petrov was a member of a delegation of young Russian artists sent to the First World Youth Festival in Prague and won a gold medal. Budapest, too, acknowledged his qualities as a singer when he appeared there in 1949. Despite the presence of more established basses, Petrov made himself known at the Bolshoi, first in small roles, soon thereafter in leading parts. By the 1950s, he had become one of the theater's leading artists. During his distinguished career at Russia's great theater, Petrov won several Stalin Prizes for his work in a repertory that came to embrace some two and a half dozen leading parts. Among his most acclaimed were Boris Godunov, Dosifei in Mussorgsky's Khovanshchina, Ruslan in Glinka's Ruslan and Ludmilla, Don Basilio, Kochubei in Tchaikovsky's Mazeppa, Méphistofélès in Gounod's Faust (his favorite), and King Philip in Verdi's Don Carlo. A recording of Verdi's Requiem conducted by Igor Markevitch (with soprano Galina Vishnevskaya) demonstrates Petrov's assured sense of Verdian line and dramatic intensity. In 1964, when singing Prince Igor with the Bolshoi at Milan's La Scala, Petrov was honored by the daughter of the famed Russian bass-baritone Feodor Chaliapin when she presented him with a ring her father wore for performances of Boris Godunov. By that time, Petrov had sung the part in venues far afield from his home theater, also offering his Gounod devil in numerous opera houses in Eastern Europe, Scandinavia, and Western Europe. In the years of his prime, the bass also won a positive reputation as a recitalist, appearing with his accompanist of three decades' association, Semyon Stuchevsky. Read less
Browse 1-9 of 9 Available Recordings
  • 1.
    Verdi: Messa da requiem - Mussorgsky: 6 Songs / Markevitch, Russian State Symphony
    Label: Urania Records   Catalog: 344 Release Date: 04/20/2018   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Giuseppe Verdi,  Modest Mussorgsky
    Performer:  Galina Vischnevskaya,  Nina Issakova,  Vladimir Ivanovsky,  Ivan Petrov
    Conductor:  Igor Markevitch
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Russian State Symphony Orchestra,  Russian State Academy Chorus,  Philharmonia Orchestra
    CD: $29.99
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  • 2.
    Borodin: Prince Igor / Ermler, Petrov, Tugarinova, Atlantov
    Label: Melodiya   Catalog: 1002080 Release Date: 06/11/2013   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Alexander Borodin
    Performer:  Elena Obraztsova,  Tatiana Tugarinova,  Artur Eisen,  Alexander Vedernikov  ... 
    Conductor:  Mark Ermler
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bolshoi Theatre Orchestra,  Bolshoi Theatre Chorus
    CD: $44.49
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  • 3.
    Verdi: Requiem; Rossini: Overtures / Igor Markevitch
    Label: Ica Classics   Catalog: 5068 Release Date: 05/29/2012   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Giuseppe Verdi,  Gioachino Rossini
    Performer:  Nina Isakova,  Galina Vishnevskaya,  Vladimir Ivanovsky,  Ivan Petrov
    Conductor:  Igor Markevitch
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra,  Russian State Academy Chorus,  French National Orchestra
    CD: $24.99
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  • 4.
    Tchaikovsky: Eugene Onegin / Bolshoi Theater
    Label: Kultur Video   Catalog: 1285 Release Date: 08/28/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Performer:  Evgeny Kibkalo,  Galina Vishnevskaya,  Larissa Avdeyeva,  Anton Grigoriev  ... 
    Conductor:  Boris Khaikin
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bolshoi Theatre Chorus,  Bolshoi Theatre Orchestra
    DVD: $18.99
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  • 5.
    Russian Opera at the Bolshoi - The Vintage Years / Chaliapin, Kozlovsky, Et Al
    Label: Kultur Video   Catalog: 2019 Release Date: 09/28/2004   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Modest Mussorgsky
    Performer:  Galina Vishnevskaya,  Sergei Lemechev,  Ivan Kozlovsky,  Alexander Pirogov  ... 
    DVD: $18.99
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  • 6.
    Gounod: Roméo Et Juliette / Godovkin, Et Al
    Label: Guild   Catalog: 2264/65 Release Date: 05/25/2004   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Charles Gounod
    Performer:  G. Pasechnik,  Yelisaveta Shumskaya,  Ivan Kozlovsky,  Natalia Sokolova  ... 
    Conductor:  Alexander Orlov
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bolshoi Theatre Orchestra,  Bolshoi Theatre Chorus
    CD: $14.99
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  • 7.
    Famous Basses Of The Past Vol 2
    Label: Preiser Records   Catalog: 89943 Release Date: 12/30/2003   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gioachino Rossini,  Peter Cornelius,  Giuseppe Verdi,  Vincenzo Bellini  ... 
    Performer:  Italo Tajo,  Gottlob Frick,  Cesare Siepi,  Raphäel Arié  ... 
    ArkivCD $16.99
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  • 8.
    Great Singers Of Russia  Volume 2 - Petrov To Kazarnovskaya
    Label: Video Artists International   Catalog: 4258 Release Date: 12/02/2003   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Various
    Performer:  Yuri Mazurok,  Elena Obraztsova,  Makvala Kasrahvili,  Olga Borodina  ... 
    DVD: $34.99
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  • 9.
    Donizetti: Lucia Di Lammermoor (Abridged)
    Label: Grand Tier   Catalog: 4694 Release Date: 03/19/2002   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gaetano Donizetti
    Performer:  Ivan Petrov,  Lily Pons,  Ferruccio Tagliavini,  Roberto Silva  ... 
    Conductor:  Renato Cellini
    On sale! $19.98
    CD: $17.99
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