Azrikan Arnold Grigoryovych


Ukrainian and Moldovan opera singer (dramatic tenor), soloist at opera houses in Kyiv, Odesa, Kharkiv, and a teacher. Honored Artist of Ukraine (1940). Winner of the Stalin Prize (1946).

He received his vocal education at the Odesa Conservatory (1926-1929, class of Y. Reider). He studied with the Spanish teacher Carlo Barrero (Kharkiv, 1931-1933). He began singing as a soloist in 1928 at the Odesa Theater. Later he sang at the Kharkiv Opera and Ballet Theater (1930-1934). When in 1934 the capital of Ukraine was moved from Kharkiv to Kyiv, Arnold Azrican was invited to sing at the Kyiv Opera House and, together with Yurii Kyporenko-Domanskyi, he was the leading tenor (1934-1943).

He sang performances in theaters in the Ukrainian language. He also performed Ukrainian folk songs and recorded two Ukrainian songs on a gramophone record.

He performed at opera houses in Sverdlovsk (1943-1951), Baku (1951-1956), Odesa (1956-1959), and Chisinau (1963-1964). In 1964-1976 he was a lecturer at the Moldavian Conservatory.

He had great success in the roles of Othello (Verdi's Othello), Herman (Tchaikovsky's The Queen of Spades), Radames (Verdi's Aida), Canio (Leoncavallo's Pagliacci), and Jose (Bizet's Carmen), Yontek (Moniuszko's Pebbles), Impostor (Boris Godunov), Cavaradossi (Puccini's Tosca), De Griet (Puccini's Manon Lescaut), Sobinin (Glinka's Life of the Tsar).

Azrikan has created many vivid images in Ukrainian opera classics: Andriy (Gulak-Artemovsky's Cossack Beyond the Danube), Petro (Natalka Poltavka) and Andriy (Taras Bulba) by Lysenko, Godun (Femelidi's The Rift), and Khlopusha (Pashchenko's The Eagle's Rebellion).
A fact from his biography

In 1933, during a short contract with the Khabarovsk Musical Theater, he was arrested under Article 58-10 of the Criminal Code for refusing to continue the performance of Soviet composer M. Femelidi's "The Rift" on the theater's unheated stage. After lengthy interrogations and searches, the case was dismissed for lack of evidence. He was rehabilitated on June 21, 2001.
Interesting facts

According to Melitina Lozynska, a soloist of the Odesa Opera, in the mid-1930s, Italian teacher Carlo Barrera consulted Odesa singers, including Arnold Azrican.

In 1939, Azrican was invited to sing on one of the first test programs of Ukrainian television.

On February 12, the Pravda newspaper reported: "Yesterday evening, after technical tests, a program was broadcast from the Kyiv TV center, the construction of which was completed recently. In the television studio, the soloist of the Kyiv Opera, Comrade Azrikan, and the violinist of the Kyiv Radio Committee, Comrade Basov, performed. The image was transmitted through the radio station RV-9, and the soundtrack was transmitted through the radio station RV-87. The program lasted 15 minutes. The equipment worked flawlessly".

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