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During their illustrious career, spanning six decades, from 1921 to 1981, the Don Cossack Choir made hundreds of recordings; after Serge Jaroff’s retirement in 1981, the performance traditions of the Cossacks were continued by Michael Minsky (with Nicolai Gedda as soloist) and, more recently, by Wanja Hlibka. A representative selection of works from nine decades have been assembled on three CDs in this extraordinary collectors’ set. Of particular interest are early recordings from the late 1920s and early 1930s, including a track featuring the basso Fyodor Chaliapine, and a rendition of Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture with Constantin Shvedoff at the piano. Also, a rare recording of “The Star-Spangled Banner,” a fragment of a rehersal with Serge Jaroff, and seldom-heard tracks with Nicolai Gedda as soloist, recorded in the 1980s, all serve to make this collection a “must-have” for all Don Cossack afficionados and all those interested in the historical paths of Russian choral music in the turbulent 20th century. The booklet contains some rare archival photos of the Don Cossacks, along with a history of the choir in English and Russian; titles are also in English and Russian, but no text translations are given.—V.M.