This suite derives from three scenes of Act One of Razumov, a chamber opera based on the novel Under Western Eyes by Joseph Conrad. Themes for the first movement are taken from the opening scene, in which a university student (Haldin) assassinates a government minister. Haldin then seeks refuge in the room of a fellow student, Razumov. Haldin asks Razumov to go find the driver who will help Haldin escape from the city. The second movement is based on the scene in which the chief of state security interviews Razumov to find out what he knows about the assassin. The concluding movement corresponds to the scene in which Razumov reports to Haldin that he has found the man who will meet him.
1st Movement (Haldin assassinates the Minister): 2:30
2nd Movement (Mikulin interviews Razumov): 3:00
3rd Movement (Razumov tells Haldin, “It is done”): 3:30
Originally arranged for clarinet and string quartet, the suite was premiered by the OdeonQuartet with Sean Osborn, clarinet, at Town Hall, Seattle, October 21, 2003, and was subsequently recorded by members of the Kiev Philharmonic for the Masterworks of the New Era CD series, volume 6.
The First Suite from Razumov was awarded the 2012 Cheryl A. Spector Prize.
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