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The Mariinsky Theatre launches its own label in with a recording of Shostakovich’s satirical opera The Nose conducted by Valery Gergiev. The new label, simply called ‘Mariinsky’, will draw on the theatre’s rich legacy and historical ties to the great Russian composers. It will showcase the extraordinary talent within the theatre and orchestra, presenting works that are both familiar and less well known to international audiences.

Establishing its own independent label gives the Mariinsky Theatre complete artistic and financial control over its recordings. It will be able to make more recordings than was possible in the past whilst ensuring that artistic values are consistently of the highest order. It will gain the freedom to choose which repertoire it records and enable listeners around the world to enjoy exceptional performances from one of the greatest opera and ballet companies.

The Mariinsky Theatre can trace its origins back to 1783 when Catherine The Great issued a decree that led to its formation. It has staged the premieres of operas by Verdi, Borodin, Mussorgsky and Tchaikovsky as well as many of the great ballets including Sleeping Beauty, The Nutcracker, La Bayadère and Raimonda. The company remains committed to presenting new opera and ballet, most recently Smelkov’s The Brothers Karamazov and in 2009 will premiere three new mono-operas based on works by Gogol. Under the leadership of Valery Gergiev its international reputation has blossomed with frequent touring and recordings. It recently reverted to the Mariinsky name, having previously been known more widely outside Russia by its Communist-era name of Kirov.

Each recording will be made using high-definition technology in the new Mariinsky Concert Hall, which has been widely acclaimed for its exceptional acoustic. Recording commenced in July 2008 during the annual White Nights Festival under the guidance of Grammy Award-winning producer James Mallinson and sound engineer John Newton.

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MA 0512
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