Sergei Prokofiev
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1891-04-27
https://musicbrainz.org/artist/0e43fe9d-c472-4b62-be9e-55f971a023e1
Sergei Prokofiev

Sergei Prokofiev Biography (BBC)

Sergey Prokofiev perhaps contributed more new music to the standard ‘classical’ repertory than any of his contemporaries. Yet he remains a difficult figure to pin down. Born and raised in Tsarist Russia, he established himself as a musical enfant terrible in the years before the Revolution, cultivating novel dissonances while still a student pianist-composer at the St Petersburg Conservatory.

Like Beethoven, he completed five concertos for his own instrument, losing interest once he was no longer primarily an executant himself. Despite political and economic turmoil, a burst of creativity around 1917 produced a large pile of scores, not least the First Violin Concerto and the ‘Classical’ Symphony, in which the composer’s lyrical vein is more strongly apparent alongside his keen sense of irony.

After 1918 he lived abroad, first in the USA, where his opera The Love for Three Oranges (1919) was staged, later mainly in Paris, where he became a peripheral member of the Diaghilev set. Several key compositions from this period have a tortured, Expressionistic character, notably the opera The Fiery Angel (1919–23, rev. 1926–7) and the related Third Symphony (1928).

The 1930s brought a surprising and, to some, inexplicable reconciliation with the new Soviet Russia. Prokofiev spent the last 17 years of his life in the USSR, stimulated as well as stifled by the cultural politics dictated by Stalin. The two men even died on the same night (5 March 1953).

Prokofiev’s return to Russia coincided with a state drive for greater directness of expression in the cultural sphere and, whatever the personal and professional setbacks, Prokofiev was encouraged to showcase his melodic gift in a series of major works that have proved to have enduring appeal. Notable among these are the ballets Romeo and Juliet (1935–6) and Cinderella (1940–44), the last three (of seven) symphonies, the last four (of nine) piano sonatas, the film music for Alexander Nevsky (1938) and Ivan the Terrible (1942–5), and the children’s fable Peter and the Wolf (1936). Acceptance of his magnum opus, the epic opera War and Peace (1941–3, rev. 1946–52), has been hindered by the lack of a definitive text and perceived ideological problems. But, for good or ill, he was an artist for hire, who prided himself on his professionalism.

As we come to know the composer’s personality through his music – in all its bracing humour, tender nostalgia and considerable tragic power – we can sense a uniquely positive response to difficult and dangerous times.

Profile by David Gutman © BBC

Sergei Prokofiev Biography (Wikipedia)

Sergei Sergeyevich Prokofiev (Russian: Серге́й Серге́евич Проко́фьев, Sergej Sergejevič Prokofjev; 27 April [O.S. 15 April] 1891 – 5 March 1953) was a Russian Soviet composer, pianist and conductor. As the creator of acknowledged masterpieces across numerous music genres, he is regarded as one of the major composers of the 20th century. His works include such widely heard pieces as the March from The Love for Three Oranges, the suite Lieutenant Kijé, the ballet Romeo and Juliet—from which "Dance of the Knights" is taken—and Peter and the Wolf. Of the established forms and genres in which he worked, he created – excluding juvenilia – seven completed operas, seven symphonies, eight ballets, five piano concertos, two violin concertos, a cello concerto, a symphony-concerto for cello and orchestra, and nine completed piano sonatas.

A graduate of the Saint Petersburg Conservatory, Prokofiev initially made his name as an iconoclastic composer-pianist, achieving notoriety with a series of ferociously dissonant and virtuosic works for his instrument, including his first two piano concertos. In 1915, Prokofiev made a decisive break from the standard composer-pianist category with his orchestral Scythian Suite, compiled from music originally composed for a ballet commissioned by Sergei Diaghilev of the Ballets Russes. Diaghilev commissioned three further ballets from Prokofiev—Chout, Le pas d'acier and The Prodigal Son—which at the time of their original production all caused a sensation among both critics and colleagues. Prokofiev's greatest interest, however, was opera, and he composed several works in that genre, including The Gambler and The Fiery Angel. Prokofiev's one operatic success during his lifetime was The Love for Three Oranges, composed for the Chicago Opera and subsequently performed over the following decade in Europe and Russia.

This entry is from Wikipedia, the user-contributed encyclopedia. It may not have been reviewed by professional editors and is licensed under an Attribution-ShareAlike Creative Commons License. If you find the biography content factually incorrect or highly offensive you can edit this article at Wikipedia. Find out more about our use of this data.



Sergei Prokofiev Tracks

Sergei Prokofiev
Piano Sonata No.7 in B flat major, Op. 83; 3rd movement
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Piano Sonata No.7 in B flat major, Op. 83; 3rd movement

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Sergei Prokofiev
Folk Dance; Dance of the Five Couples; Mandolin Dance (Romeo and Juliet)
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Folk Dance; Dance of the Five Couples; Mandolin Dance (Romeo and Juliet)
Sergei Prokofiev
Suggestion diabolique, op. 4
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Suggestion diabolique, op. 4
Sergei Prokofiev
Piano Sonata No. 3 in A minor, op. 28
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Piano Sonata No. 3 in A minor, op. 28
Sergei Prokofiev
Symphony No 1 in D major, Op 25, 'Classical' (1st mvt)
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Symphony No 1 in D major, Op 25, 'Classical' (1st mvt)
Sergei Prokofiev
Toccata Op. 11
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Toccata Op. 11
Sergei Prokofiev
Romeo and Juliet, Op.64 (Act 1 Sc 2) Dance of The Knights
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Romeo and Juliet, Op.64 (Act 1 Sc 2) Dance of The Knights
Sergei Prokofiev
Happiness (Waltz Suite)
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Happiness (Waltz Suite)
Sergei Prokofiev
Cello Sonata in C major, Op.119; Moderato - Andante dolce (2nd movement)
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Cello Sonata in C major, Op.119; Moderato - Andante dolce (2nd movement)
Sergei Prokofiev
Cinderella's Arrival; Grand Waltz (Cinderella)
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Cinderella's Arrival; Grand Waltz (Cinderella)
Sergei Prokofiev
Dance of the Knights (Romeo and Juliet ballet suite)
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Dance of the Knights (Romeo and Juliet ballet suite)
Sergei Prokofiev
Cinderella's Waltz; Midnight (Cinderella Suite No 1)
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Cinderella's Waltz; Midnight (Cinderella Suite No 1)
Sergei Prokofiev
The Battle on the Ice (Alexander Nevsky)
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The Battle on the Ice (Alexander Nevsky)
Sergei Prokofiev
Romeo and Juliet - Suite No. 2 Op.64b
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Romeo and Juliet - Suite No. 2 Op.64b
Sergei Prokofiev
The Love for Three Oranges Symphonic Suite Op.33b
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The Love for Three Oranges Symphonic Suite Op.33b
Sergei Prokofiev
Five Poems Op.36 - Four and Five
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Five Poems Op.36 - Four and Five
Sergei Prokofiev
Peter And The Wolf Op.67 - extract
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Peter And The Wolf Op.67 - extract
Sergei Prokofiev
American Overture Op.42
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American Overture Op.42
Sergei Prokofiev
Chout - Suite Op.21a
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Chout - Suite Op.21a
Sergei Prokofiev
The Prodigal Son Op.46 - Scene Two extracts
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The Prodigal Son Op.46 - Scene Two extracts
Sergei Prokofiev
Quintet in G Minor Op.39
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Quintet in G Minor Op.39
Sergei Prokofiev
Concerto No. 2 in G Minor Op.16 - 1st and 2nd Movements
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Concerto No. 2 in G Minor Op.16 - 1st and 2nd Movements
Sergei Prokofiev
The Gambler Op.49
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The Gambler Op.49
Sergei Prokofiev
The Nurse Delivers Juliet's Letter To Romeo (Romeo and Juliet)
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The Nurse Delivers Juliet's Letter To Romeo (Romeo and Juliet)
Sergei Prokofiev
Sonata No.6 Op.82 in A
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Sonata No.6 Op.82 in A
Sergei Prokofiev
Sonata No.4 Op.29 in C minor
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Sonata No.4 Op.29 in C minor
Sergei Prokofiev
Sonata No. 3 in A Minor Op.28
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Sonata No. 3 in A Minor Op.28
Sergei Prokofiev
The Fiery Angel Op.37
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The Fiery Angel Op.37
Sergei Prokofiev
Five Melodies Op.35
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Five Melodies Op.35
Sergei Prokofiev
Concerto No. 3 in C Major Op.26 - 1st and 2nd Movements
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Concerto No. 3 in C Major Op.26 - 1st and 2nd Movements
Sergei Prokofiev
Four Pieces Op.32
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Four Pieces Op.32
Sergei Prokofiev
The Love for Three Oranges Op.33b
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The Love for Three Oranges Op.33b
Sergei Prokofiev
Romeo And Juliet - Ballet Op.64
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Romeo And Juliet - Ballet Op.64
Sergei Prokofiev
Romeo and Juliet: Dance of the Knights
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Romeo and Juliet: Dance of the Knights
Sergei Prokofiev
Scythian Suite Op.20
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Scythian Suite Op.20
Sergei Prokofiev
Concerto No.1 in D Flat Major Op.10
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Concerto No.1 in D Flat Major Op.10
Sergei Prokofiev
Prelude from 10 Pieces in C Major Op.12 No.7 Prelude
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Prelude from 10 Pieces in C Major Op.12 No.7 Prelude
Sergei Prokofiev
Overture on Hebrew Themes Op.34
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Overture on Hebrew Themes Op.34
Sergei Prokofiev
The Tales Of An Old Grandmother Op.31
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The Tales Of An Old Grandmother Op.31
Sergei Prokofiev
Autumn Sketch, Op 8
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Autumn Sketch, Op 8
Sergei Prokofiev
Cinderella In the Palace (Waltz suite Op.110)
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Cinderella In the Palace (Waltz suite Op.110)
Sergei Prokofiev
Romeo and Juliet - Dance with the mandolins
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Romeo and Juliet - Dance with the mandolins
Sergei Prokofiev
Symphony No. 1 in D major Op 25 (Classical)
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Symphony No. 1 in D major Op 25 (Classical)
Sergei Prokofiev
Alexander's Entry in Pskov (Alexander Nevsky)
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Alexander's Entry in Pskov (Alexander Nevsky)
Sergei Prokofiev
The Birth of Kije (Lieutenant Kije Suite, Op 60)
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The Birth of Kije (Lieutenant Kije Suite, Op 60)
Sergei Prokofiev
Dreams, Op 6
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Dreams, Op 6
Sergei Prokofiev
Lieutenant Kije - suite for orchestra (Op.60)
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Lieutenant Kije - suite for orchestra (Op.60)
Sergei Prokofiev
Romeo and Juliet, Op 64 (Excerpts)
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Romeo and Juliet, Op 64 (Excerpts)
Sergei Prokofiev
Quintet in G minor, Op 39
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Quintet in G minor, Op 39

Quintet in G minor, Op 39

Ensemble
Hexagon Ensemble
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