The Moscow Stanislavsky and Nemirovich-Danchenko music theatre has a reputation as the third theatre in Russia, after the Bolshoy and the Mariinsky. The theatre gave its first opera performance in 1941. The company chorus is called after Stanislavsky, because of his insistence on singing actors and not just singers. It has a long history of dramatic performance in Russian repertoire, including Boris Godunov, The Queen of Spades, Eugene Onegin, Ruslan and Lyudmila, and more recently in standard Italian and French opera. The first chorus master was A.Stepanov, followed by I. Mertens. The present principal chorus master of the theatre is A. Toplov and the chorus master for the present recording is O.Kusnezov.