The Rich Russian Strain in Prokofiev's Piano Music

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Sergei Prokofiev’s talents as a pianist and composer emerged early. An exasperated music teacher once told the boy, “I guess I should be studying with you!” On this edition of The Great Russian Piano Tradition, David Dubal reflects on the first half of Prokofiev’s life and music, tracing his journey from precocious student to enfant terrible of the pre-Revolution Russian arts world.

Prokofiev was the last great Russian master born in the 19th century. Even as he explored dissonance and adventurous coloration, his work was always firmly rooted in his Russian heritage. Tonight’s program features his earliest works, including portions of his first sonata and concerto, performed by Sviatoslav Richter, Vladimir Horowitz, Evgeny Kissin and more.

Program playlist:

Sergei Prokofiev: Piano Sonata No. 1 Op. 1
Barbara Nissman

Sergei Prokofiev: Etude in C minor Op. 2 No.3
Evgeny Kissin

Sergei Prokofiev: Piano Concerto No. 1 Op. 10 section 3 - Allegro scherzando
Sviatoslav Richter

Sergei Prokofiev: Sarcasms, Op. 17: Preciptosissimo
Anne-Marie McDermott

Sergei Prokofiev: Piano Sonata No. 7 Op. 83: Andante caloroso
Vladimir Horowitz

Sergei Prokofiev: Sonata No. 3 Op. 2
Sidney Foster
International Piano Archives

Sergei Prokofiev: Visions Fugitives, Op. 22, No. 18: Con una dolce lentezza
Jerry Wong

Sergei Prokofiev: Peter and the Wolf, Op. 67: The Triumphal Procession
Tatiana Nikolayeva

Sergei Prokofiev" Piano Concerto No. 3 in C, Op. 26: 3rd Movement
Martha Argerich