Anatolij Ivanovich Orfjonov was born on October 17 (30),
1908 in Sushki, in the Rjazan
province, into a priest family. The family had eight children. He listened to records of Sobinov and wanted to
be a singer. His father died in 1920.
In 1928, Orfjonov arrived in Moscow and studied at once in two schools,
a pedagogical by day and a musical (class of Aleksandr Akimovich Pogorelski, student of Everardi) in the evening.
In 1933, Orfjonov started singing in the chorus of the opera studio headed
by K. S. Stanislavskij, and a year later he became a soloist of that studio.
In 1940/41, Orfjonov sang with the State ensemble of Opera of the USSR
under the direction of Ivan Kozlovskyj.
In 1942, Orfjonov entered the Bolshoj, where he sang until 1955.
From 1954 to 1959, he was the artistic director of the All-Union Radio vocal group.
From 1950, he taught singing at Gnesin (until 1971), at the Bolshoj (1963–1969),
at the Cairo conservatory (1971–1973) and at the Bratislava conservatory (1974–1980).
From 1980 to 1984, he was advisor of the troupe of the Bolshoj.
His repertory included: Lenskij, Almaviva, Duca, Simpleton, Alfredo, Ottavio, Faust, Sinodal,
Vladimir Igorevich, Vašek, Astrologer, Triquet, Berendej, Lykov, Vakhshi (Darvazskoe ushchelye by Lev Stepanov),
Werther, Mozart, Beppe, Fra Diavolo, Jaquino, Bajan, Gritsko (Sorochinskaja jarmarka), ...
He took part in the movie Ti moj vostorg, moe muchenye (produced in 1983, premiered in 1984), with
Irina Skobtseva, Vladislav Pyavko, Vsevolod Safonov, Evgenij Teterin, Marija Vinogradov, Irina Arkhipova, Ludmila Sergienko, Pavel
Ludmila Nam, Vladimir Ivanovskij, Kir Leonov, Galina Olejnichenko, Leonid Maslov, Ludmila Petrova, B. Levin,
Vadim Vilskij, Zoja Isaeva, Svetlana Konovalova, and Vladimir Protasenko.
Orfjonov died on March 6, 1987 in Moscow.