|1871 New version of "Boris Godunov." Planning of a comic opera on a subject by Gogol. Planning of work on the beginning of a historical musical drama concerning the Volga Cossacks.70|
74. To VLADIMIR STASOV
10 August, '71
Centuries have passed, my dear, since I last saw you and talked things over with you; no one is to blame for this but the vicissitudes of fate. And I have a lot to tell you on our account, and for that "my own eyes" are burning to behold you and to torture your hearing "with my obscenely hoarse voice."--The criminal Tzar Boris perpetrates a certain arioso; in the opinion of musical sages, and above all, originating from Lodyzhky known as Fim, as well as from the knight of the marine tempests [Rimsky-Korsakov] so laudably transformed by you into the admiralty, this criminal arioso is very lovely and tickles the ear rather amusingly, and the words of this arioso have been cooked up by me.71
Since it is disgusting and boring to watch and listen to the grinding of the criminal's teeth, the little mob of nurses breaks through after this, bawling and clamoring unintelligibly, whereupon the Tzar drives them away and sends his son to find out "why these women are howling there." . . . Whilst the son attends to this, a boyar in attendance presents himself and informs against Shuisky, and when this spy slips away the Tzarevich returns and in answer to Boris's question: "Well, what's going on there?" explains as follows:
Sire, permit me to begin a true story.
I am listening, my son.____________________