Anna Petrova

Petrova, Anna Iakovlevna

 

(née M. I. Vorob’eva) Born Feb. 2 (14), 1817, in St. Petersburg; died there Apr. 13 (26), 1901. Russian contralto.

Petrova studied at the St. Petersburg Theatrical School. First enrolled in a ballet class, she subsequently transferred into the voice class of P. Sapientsa. Petrova later took lessons from M. I. Glinka. In 1832 she joined the choir of the St. Petersburg Opera Theater; she was a soloist there from 1835 to 1847. Petrova created the roles of Vania and Ratmir in Glinka’s Ivan Susanin (1836) and Ruslan and Liudmila (1842). Glinka rated highly her voice, her great musicality, and her stage charm. He composed Vania’s “By the Monastery” scene for her in 1837. With her husband, O. A. Petrov, Petrova furthered realism in Russian opera. She wrote reminiscences of Glinka (Olden Times in Russia, 1880, vol. 27).

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Anna Petrova trudged wearily through the snow, her two plastic shopping bags laden with vegetables from the Zhenskiya market, the cheapest in the city.