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Tolstoy and the spoken word

This is a select list containing spoken word recordings of works by Leo Tolstoy, as well as recordings of the voice of Tolstoy himself.

Please note that titles held solely by the BBC, such as the 1972 radio version of The Power of Darkness, are not listed here but may be ordered on request.

Anna Karenina (Анна Каренина)

Spoken excerpt in Russian. Vassilii Ivanovich Kachalov. LP.
BL ref. 29E USSR M 40849/50 MELODIIA

1974 BBC Radio 4 adaptation in English. Broadcast in two parts. The first part is followed by a short extract from Kaleidoscope in which Gillian Reynolds gives a first reaction to the production. Tape.
BL ref. T6492WR

Abridged version read by Diana Quick. CSA Telltapes, 1994. Two cassettes.
BL ref. 1CA0029843

CD version of Diana Quick reading.
BL ref. 1SS0001267

Abridged version read by Juliet Stevenson. Penguin Classics, 1996. Four cassettes.
BL ref. 1CA0026819

Abridged version read by Saskia Wickham. Hodder, 1996. Two cassettes.
BL ref. 1CA0028027

Abridged version read by Alfred Molina. Hodder, 1997. Two cassettes.
BL ref. 1CA0028360

BBC dramatization by Ed Thomason. BBC Classic Collections, 1997. Two cassettes.
BL ref. 1CA0027785

Unabridged reading by Kate Lock. Naxos Audiobooks, 2010. 31 CDs.
BL ref. 1SS0006663

Cossacks, The (Казаки)

Unabridged reading by Jonathan Oliver. Naxos, 2010. Six CDs.
BL ref. 1CD0307349

Death of Ivan Ilych, The (Смерть Ивана Ильича)

Nicholas McInerny’s 1994 BBC Radio 4 dramatized version. Tape.
BL ref. H2699/01

Unabridged reading BY Oliver Ford Davies. Naxos, 2008. Three CDs.
BL ref. 1CD0284309

Kreutzer Sonata, The (Крейцерова соната)

Stage version with David Suchet. Live recording by British Library at Royal Court Theatre, 1978. Tape.
BL ref. T1816BW

Unabridged reading by Jonathan Oliver. Naxos, 2010. Three CDs.
BL ref. 1CD0310519

Master and Man (Хозяин и работник)

BBC dramatization. CD.
BL ref. 1CD0258626

Resurrection (Воскресение)

BBC Radio 4 dramatized version, 1994. In three episodes. Tapes.
BL ref. H4093/2; H4132/4; H4178/3

War and Peace (Война и мир)

Abridged reading by Edward Petherbridge. CSA Telltapes, 1995. Four cassettes.
BL ref. 1CA0029528

Stage version by Helen Edmundson. Recorded live by BL at National Theatre, 1996. Tape.
BL ref. H6999

BBC Radio Collection, 1997. Ten cassettes.
BL ref. 1CA0028356

Abridged version read by Bill Nighy. Penguin, 1998. Four cassettes.
BL ref. 1CA0028252

Volume 1 - complete text, unabridged. Naxos, 2006. 25 CDs
BL ref. 1SS0004922

Volume 2 - complete text, unabridged. Naxos, 2006. 26 CDs
BL ref. 1SS0004923

The voice of Tolstoy

Tolstoy was first recorded in 1895, when a representative of Thomas Edison visited his estate in Russia. Subsequently, in 1908, Edison sent Tolstoy a phonograph of his own, which the author used to record his letters on wax cylinders for sending in the post. These recordings are collected on the Russian CD Govorit Lev Tolstoi (Leo Tolstoy speaks). Tolstoy was recorded for the last time in October 1909, reading Thoughts from the Book: ‘For Every Day’, in French, English, Russian and German. Circa 1987, Symposium Records pressed a new set of two 74 rpm discs from the original EMI matrices, featuring all four versions. The British Library has issued the English version on the 2-CD set Voices of History 2.

The Dawn of Recording: The Julius Block Cylinders. Marston 530112, 2008.
BL ref. 1CD0294376

Thoughts from the Book: 'For Every Day'. Symposium 1029-1030, ca 1987.
BL ref. 1LP0127501

Voices of History 2. British Library NSACD19-20, 2005
BL ref. 1CD0249358

Govorit Lev Tolstoi (Leo Tolstoy speaks). Leo Tolstoy State Museum RDCD 00723, 2002
BL ref. 1CD0298284

In addition the Library holds many recordings about Tolstoy. Please consult the online sound recordings catalogue for further details.

For recordings held in the BBC Radio archive please refer to the Library’s reader enquiry service.

Contact

Drama and Literature Section
The British Library
Sound Archive
96 Euston Road
London
NW1 2DB
United Kingdom

Tel: +44 (0)20 7412 7447
Fax: +44 (0)20 7412 7441

E-mail: drama@bl.uk

Peter W. Hellyer, Curator, Russian Studies
European Studies
The British Library
96 Euston Road
London
NW1 2DB
United Kingdom

Tel: +44 (0)20 7412 7582

E-mail: peter.hellyer@bl.uk

Katya Rogatchevskaia, Lead Curator, Russian Studies
European Studies
The British Library
96 Euston Road
London
NW1 2DB
United Kingdom

Tel: +44 (0)20 7412 7587

E-mail: katya.rogatchevskaia@bl.uk