New Collected Works Compositions for the Stage

The Great Lightning. Sans op. Hypothetically Murdered. Op. 31. Music to the stage revue. Scores.

Volume 54

Hypothetically Murdered. Music to the Variety Circus Show. Op. 31. Instrumentation by Gerard McBurney. The Great Lightning. Unfinished Opera. Sans Op.
Edited by Sergei Chebotaryov. Explanatory article by Manashir Iakubov.

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Hypothetically Murdered:


The music to the variety circus show Hypothetically Murdered (also translated as Conditionally Killed, Declared Dead) based on a play by Vsevolod Voyevodin and Yevgeni Ryss, Op. 31, was written for a show of the same name performed at the Leningrad Music Hall.

Orchestra (Instrumentation by G. McBurney):

Piccolo, Flauto, Oboe, Clarinetto (B), Saxofono soprano (B), Saxofono alto (Es), Saxofono tenore (B), Fagotto
2 Trombe (B), 2 Corni (F), Trombone, Tuba
Timpani, Tamburo, Piatti, Cassa
4 Violini I, 4 Violini II, 2 Viole, 2 Violoncelli, 2 Contrabassi


Summer–Autumn 1931, at Leningrad.

  Only the author's manuscripts of the first two items of the original author's score of Hypothetically Murdered have survived: 1. Overture, 2. The Ruination of the City.
  Composer Gerard McBurney prepared his edition and orchestration of the music to the variety circus show Hypothetically Murdered based on the piano score as ordered by DSCH Publishers. This edition is being published for the first time in this volume. We are not commenting on Gerard McBurney's score. Editor S.B. Chebotarev made some clarifications in the music of McBurney's score in keeping with the
author's manuscript of the piano score.

Unfinished Opera The Great Lightning:


Comic opera The Great Lightning, with libretto by Nikolai Aseyev, abandoned after the completion of nine numbers.


Piccolo, 2 Flutes, 2 Oboes, Cor anglais, E flat Clarinet, 2 B flat Clarinets, 2 Bassoons, Contrabassoon
4 Horns, 3 Trumpets, 3 Trombones, Tuba
Timpani, Triangle, Wood block, Side drum, Cymbals, Bass drum, Gong
Glockenspiel, Xylophone, Flexatone, Harp
Soprano, 4 Tenor, Baritone, and 3 Bass soloists, S.A.T.B. Chorus.




Suite of eight numbers (1–5 and 7–9): 16' 10"

  The author's manuscripts of the score and piano score of the unfinished comic opera The Great Lightning are kept in the library of the Mariinsky Theatre of Opera and Ballet in St. Petersburg.
  The score of the opera was published for the first time in Volume 23 of Dmitri Shostakovich's Collected Works (Muzyka Publishers, Moscow, 1986); and the piano score was published in Volume 28 of the same publication (1986). When preparing this publication, the text of the first publication was collated once more with the texts of the author's manuscripts of the score and piano score (in accordance with the copies kept in Dmitri Shostakovich's Archives).