Paris: n.p. 1929. Folio. Original wrappers illustrated in colour by the Russian artist Ivan Bilibin (1876-1942). 30ff. with text and illustrations including one large tipped-in colour plate of costume designs and 2ff. with a total of 10 tipped-in colour plates of set and costume designs. Central bifolium with cast list and production details, with printed overpaste alterations to cast list. The cast of 26 ballet dancers included Boris Kniaseff (1900-1975).
Very slightly worn; occasional browning; minor staining. In very good condition overall.
The Snow Maiden, in a prologue and four acts by Rimsky-Korsakov to his own libretto after the "Springtime Fairy-Tale" by Alexander Nikolayevich Ostrovsky (1873), was first performed in St. Petersburgat the Mariinsky Theatre, on 29 January/10 February 1882.
"... the splendid Mariinsky production of 1882, won the composer one of his greatest public successes. Rimsky-Korsakov remembered the time of its creation as full of inspiration, one of the happiest periods of his life. The story, a ‘spring tale’ by Aleksandr Ostrovsky – a play in verse laced with artful imitations of folksong texts – had already caught the attention of Tchaikovsky, who had supplied it with incidental music; Rimsky-Korsakov worked intensively on his own version, and completed the vocal score after two and a half months during the summer of 1880. He and his wife usually rented a country home every summer, but this time the situation was especially lucky. For the first time in his life the composer found himself in a ‘true Russian village’. Beautiful surroundings, archaic place-names, berries, flowers and birds – everything was ‘in harmony with my pantheistic mood at the time, and with my fascination in the Snow Maiden plot’, he recalled in his Chronicle." Mark Humphreys et al. in Grove Music Online. Item #27813
Price: $275.00 other currencies