6 Today is the 90th birthday of Pavel Lisitsian (1911). From 1940 through the 1960s, Lisitsian was one of the stars of the Bolshoi Theater. Listeners were mesmerized not only by his beautiful baritone voice, but also by his talented acting. His most famous parts included Robert in Iolanta, Mazepa in Tchaikovsky’s opera of the same name, Escamilio in Carmen, Amonasro in Aida and many others. Yet it was his portrayal of Yevgeny Onegin in the famous Tchaikovsky opera which was considered his finest work, so much so that he was called “the inimitable Onegin.” Not surprisingly, Lisitsian was the first Soviet singer invited to sing on the stage of New York’s Metropolitan Opera.
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