Czech Opera Rarities: Ivan Kusnjer

Album cover art for upc 099925407421
Label: SUPRAPHON
Catalog: SU4074
Format: CD

Ivan Kusnjer – baritone. Czechoslovak Radio Symphony Orchestra, National Theatre Orchestra and Chorus, etc.; conductors: Libor Pešek, Josef Chaloupka, etc.

Baritone arias from lesser-known Czech operas: J. Mysliveček – Abramo e Isacco, J. L. Zvonař – Záboj, F. Z. Skuherský – Lóra, K. Šebor – The Templars in Moravia, B. Smetana – The Brandenburgers in Bohemia, A. Dvořák – Vanda, J. R. Rozkošný – The Rapids of Saint John, K. Bendl: Lejla, E. Nápravník – Dubrovsky, J. B. Foerster – Jessika, O. Ostrčil – The Death of Vlasta, Z. Fibich – Hedy, J. Pauer – Zuzana Vojířová, V. Novák – Karlštejn

Ivan Kusnjer unveils the world of little known Czech operas!
Ivan Kusnjer has rightly been awarded the title of "King of Czech Singers" by the music critics. The fruits of his single-minded work are worthy of admiration: successes at international voice competitions, guest appearances on opera stages worldwide (Berliner Staatsoper, Wiener Staatsoper, Teatro la Fenice, La Scala, Teatro Real, Théâtre Châtelet, Opéra-Bastille, etc.) and in prestigious concert halls (Albert Hall, Barbican, Carnegie Hall, Suntory Hall), collaboration with renowned conductors (Mackerras, Albrecht, Harnoncourt, Gardiner, Pešek, Kout, Bělohlávek, etc.), the remarkable range of operatic roles he has portrayed (primarily for the National Theatre in Prague), songs and cantatas he has performed, as well as numerous accolades he has received (the 2001 Gustav Mahler European Prize, three Thalia Awards)... A special chapter is Ivan Kusnjer’s keen interest in lesser-known Czech operas. Works linked with the time of their origin only rarely pass the test of time. Yet the carefully prepared selection on this album indicates just how much interesting music remains in the archives, and the recording is hence a must for all opera lovers. The CD comprises previously unreleased arias, as masterfully performed by Ivan Kusnjer.

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