Opera Scotland

Evgeny Nesterenko Suggest updates

Evgeny Evgenyevich Nesterenko.

Born Moscow, 8 January 1938.

Russian bass.

Evgeny Nesterenko was a leading soloist with the Bolshoi Opera in Moscow through most of his career. He studied in Leningrad with Vasily Lukanin, making his debut at the Maly Theatre, Leningrad, as Gremin in 1963.

He joined the Bolshoi in 1971, and his repertoire included Glinka (Ruslan); Mussorgsky (Boris, Dosifei); Borodin (Konchak) and Prokofiev (Kutuzov). He also sang non-Russian parts such as Rossini (Don Basilio), Gounod (Méphistophélès) and Verdi (Philip).

He made guest appearances in the west, including Vienna, Milan and Paris. In Britain, apart from tours with the Bolshoi, he made two appearances with the Royal Opera at Covent Garden. His first role, in 1978, was the comic one of Don Basilio in Il barbiere di Siviglia. He returned in 1982 to perform in a rare revival of Khovanshchina. It was reported that the management had asked him to play Dosifei, his usual role in Moscow, statuesque and serious. But he had been singing Dosifei throughout his career, and begged the Covent Garden management to allow him to play the more varied part of Prince Ivan Khovansky,  which even has comic elements.  He was well aware that the Welsh bass Gwynne Howell was an excellent interpreter of Dosifei. And so it happened, and he had great fun ogling his dancing girls before being despatched by an assassin's hand.

He does not seem to have performed opera in Scotland - he was not a member of the company that came over for the 1990 Glasgow Year of Culture celebrations, or when the Bolshoi returned for the following year's Edinburgh Festival. It was a delightful surprise to have this famous figure putting in an appearance. for the particularly well-cast millennium celebration in Dundee, when he was in his sixties.

Roles in Scotland

Messa da Requiem 1999

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