Dolukhanova was an important Russian mezzo-soprano of Armenian descent, who was not heard frequently in the West for political reasons. I wanted to post tis one song by Rimsky-Korsakov with Dolukhanova singing because it is simply so beautiful. I will post a lot more about Dolukhanova in the future.

The youtube selection has an entire album in it. “Kogda volnujetsja zheltejushchaja niva” begins at about 18:03. You can listen to the whole album if you like, but I am only providing a translation for the one romance at this time.

Below is the future I mentioned above, with selected pieces.

Когда волнуется желтеющая нива

Когда волнуется желтеющая нива,
и свежий лес шумит при звуке ветерка,
и прячется в саду малиновая слива
под тенью сладостной зелёного листка;

Когда росой обрызганный душистой,
румяным вечером иль утра в час златой,
из-под куста мне ландыш серебритый
приветливо кивает головой;

Когда студеный ключ играет по оврагу
и, погружая мысль в какой-то смутный сон,
лепечет мне таинственную сагу
про мирный край, откуда мчится он;

Тогда смиряется души моей тревога,
тогда расходится морщины на челе,
и счастье я могу постигнуть на земле,
и в небесах я вижу бога!

Kogda volnujetsja zheltejushchaja niva

Kogda volnujetsja zheltejushchaja niva,
i svezhij les shumit pri zvuke veterka,
i prjachetsja v sadu malinovaja sliva
pod ten’ju sladostnoj zeljonogo listka;

Kogda rosoj obryzgannyj dushistoj,
rumjanym vecherom il’ utra v chas zlatoj,
iz-pod kusta mne landysh serebrityj
privetlivo kivajet golovoj;

Kogda studenyj kljuch igrajet po ovragu
i, pogruzhaja mysl’ v kakoj-to smutnyj son,
lepechet mne tainstvennuju sagu
pro mirnyj kraj, otkuda mchitsja on;

Togda smirjajetsja dushi mojej trevoga,
togda raskhoditsja morshchiny na chele,
i schast’e ja mogu postignut’ na zemle,
i v nebesakh ja vizhu boga!

When the golden cornfield waves

When the golden cornfield waves
And the fresh forest rustles in the wind,
When the crimson plum hides in the garden
Under the sweet shade of a green leaf,

When, sprinkled with fragrant dew,
In a blushing evening or golden morning time,
A silvery lily of the valley from under the bush
Affably beckons to me with its head;

When the cold stream glistens in the ravine
And, submerging my thought into some obscure slumber,
Murmurs a mysterious saga
About a peaceful land from which it flows;

Then dissipates my soul’s anxiety,
Then the wrinkles dissolve from my forehead,
And I can comprehend happiness upon the Earth,
And in the sky I can see God!

0, Bozhe moy!
Vzglyani na greshnuyu menya;
Ya muchus’, ya bol’na dushoy,
lzr’ita skorb’yu grud’ moya.
0, moy Tvorets, velik moy grekh,
Ya na zemle prestupney vsekh.
Kipela v nyom mladaya krov’,
B’ila chista yego lyubov’,
No on yeyo v grudi svoyey
Tail tak svyato ot lyudey.
Ya znala vsyo … 0, Bozhe moy!
Prosti mne, greshnoy i bol’noy.
Yego ya muki ponyala;
Ul’ibkoy, vzorom lish’ odnim
Ya b iscelit’ yego mogla,
No ya ne szhalilas’ nad nim.
Tomilsya dolgo, dolgo on,
Pechal’yu tyazhkoy udruchyon;
1 umer, bedn’i”y, nakonets,
0, Bozhe moy, o, moy Tvorets!
Tron’sya greshnoyu mol’boy …
Vzglyani, kak ya bol’na dushoy.

Oh, my God!
Look down on me;
I suffer, I am ill in my soul,
Sorrow tortures my breast.
Oh, my Creator, great is my sin,
I am the worst criminal on earth.
Young blood boiled in him,
Pure was his love,
But he kept it in himself,
So holy, from people.
I knew it all … Oh, my God!
Forgive me, sinful and ill.
I understood his sufferings;
With only the sign of a smile
I could have cured him,
But I didn’t pity him.
He suffered long, long,
With sadness and heavily depressed; And he died, miserable at last,
Oh, my God, Oh, my Creator!
Be touched by my sinful prayer … Look how I am ill in my soul.

Tchaikosky, Op 47, no. 6
Whether by Day

День ли царит, тишина ли ночнаяДень ли царит, тишина ли ночная,
В снах ли тревожных, в житейской борьбе,
Всюду со мной, мою жизнь наполняя,
Дума все та же, одна роковая,
Всё о тебе!

С нею не страшен мне призрак былого,
Сердце воспрянуло снова любя…
Вера, мечты, вдохновенное слово,
Всё, что в душе дорогого, святого,
Всё от тебя!

Будут ли дни мои ясны, унылы,
Скоро ли сгину я, жизнь загубя!
Знаю одно, что до самой могилы
Помыслы, чувства, и песни, и силы,
Всё для тебя!

Den’ li carit, tishina li nochnaja

Den’ li carit, tishina li nochnaja,
V snakh li bessvjaznykh, v zhitejskoj bor’be,
Vsjudu so mnoj, moju zhizn’ napolnjaja,
Duma vse ta zhe, odna rokovaja,
Vsjo o tebe!

S neju ne strashen mne prizrak bylogo,
Serdce vosprjanulo snova ljubja…
Vera, mechty, vdokhnovennoje slovo,
Vsjo, chto v dushe dorogogo, svjatogo,
Vsjo ot tebja!

Budut li dni moi jasny, unyly,
Skoro li sginu ja, zhizn’ zagubja!
Znaju odno, chto do samoj mogily
Pomysly, chuvstva, i pesni, i sily,
Vsjo dlja tebja!

Whether by day

Whether by day or in the stillness of night,
Whether in a dream or awake,
Everywhere I go, I am filled entirely
With one thought alone:
Only of you!

Gone are the griefs that have tortured me,
Love alone reigns supreme within my heart…
Courage, hope, and eternal devotion,
All that is good, united in my soul,
All that my soul holds dear or sacred,
It is all because of you!

Whether the rest of my days pass in joy or in sadness,
Whether my life ends soon or late,
I know that, though death overtake me,
All my hope, feeling, song, and strength,
All, all, all are for you!

Born: March 5, 1918 – Moscow, Russia, Died: December 4, 2007 – Moscow, Russia

The great Armenian mezzo-soprano and contralto, Zara [Sara] Dolukhanova [Doloukhanova, Doluchanova], was born in a musically talented family. Her mother was A leading Armenian singer while her father-engineer played the flute, the clarinet and the trumpet. She was later married to noted composer Alexander Pavlovich Dolukhanian. She first studied the piano, then the violin. At 16, she decided that she wanted to study singing. She studied at the Gnessin Institute in Moscow with V. Belyayeva-Tarassevitch.

Zara Dolukhanova sang many roles on the opera stage, but her career was especially dedicated to concert and radio. In 1944, she became a soloist with Moscow Radio, then in 1959 became a leading soloist of the Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra. Her stage roles included Marfa in Khovanshchina, Lel in Snow Maiden as well as Verdi roles but especially Rossini, (Italiana, Cenerentola, Arsace (Semiramide)). She performed and recorded many recitals of classical lieder, Russian Romances, and popular songs of Armenia and other countries in various languages.

Zara Doloukhanova was one of the first artists to cross the iron curtain and to sing in western countries. In the late forties only the Bolshoi Ballet, Gilels, Oistrakh and possibly Moiseev’s dance group were permitted to perform. Critics raved about her deep understanding of styles and the sophistication of her interpretations. Her name is a legend. For a Soviet artist she toured extensively – England, France, East Europe, Scandinavia, Latin America. and she appeared in the USA, first in New York in 1959. In her first American tour she enjoyed great acclaim. She toured America again in 1970. In 1966 she was awarded the Lenin Prize.