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Artist

Michael Ryba Bass

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Michael Ryba

Michael Ryba was born in Warsaw, in 1923, into a family of musicians. When the Nazis invaded Poland in 1939, Mr. Ryba managed to escape to Russia by riding his bicycle. In his newly adopted home of Moscow, Ryba resumed his vocal training, graduating from the Moscow Conservatory. He soon thereafter began his career in the Bolshoi Theater and the All-Soviet Radio, although his principal professional association was with the Moscow State Philharmonic Society.

Michael Ryba with Dmitry Shostakovich
Michael Ryba with Dmitry Shostakovich

Always creative in his concert programming, Ryba premiered numerous song cycles in Russia - such as Ravel's "Three Quixote Serenades to Dulcinea" and Beethoven's "Heroic Odes," with verses by Hellert, often providing the translations into Russian himself. Ryba's repertory was quite varied, ranging from light arias by Cimaroso and Scarlatti to weighty song cycles by Schubert and Schumann. In addition, he dedicated numerous performances to African-American spirituals, collaborating with Charles Munch of the Boston Symphony Orchestra.

Perhaps Ryba's most celebrated work surrounds his close contacts with many outstanding Soviet composers - most notably, Shostakovich and Kabalevsky, as well as Veinberg, Khrennikov, Pokrass, and Muradeli. Ryba delivered numerous premieres by these and other Soviet composers - such as the "Dolmatovsky" song cycle by Shostakovich, debuted at the Small Hall of the Moscow Conservatory, with the composer at the piano.

Russians today likewise recognize the rich bass voice of Michael Ryba, thanks to his work on such notable Russian films as "The Last Inch," "The Carnival Night," and "The still Don River." We at the Classical Archives are grateful to Ryba's son, Michael Ryba, Jr., for access to these fine recordings - featuring Schubert lieder (sung in Russian), and hope to increase his CMA repertory in the near future.

Michael Ryba
email: leila17@hotbox.ru


Michael Ryba Michael Ryba was born in Warsaw, in 1923, into a family of musicians. When the Nazis invaded Poland in 1939,... More
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