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Prokofiev: Symphony No. 7

Stephen Johnson explores Prokofiev's Seventh Symphony, a work written in the aftermath of criticism from Stalin's advisor Andrei Zhdanov.

Stephen Johnson examines Prokofiev's Seventh Symphony. It was written at a difficult time in Prokofiev's life. At the Congress of Soviet Composers in 1948, Prokofiev, along with other composers, was accused by Stalins's advisor on culture, Andrei Zhdanov, of 'formalism, decadence and bourgeois decay'. His response was write a symphony might fit the political agenda, yet at the same time hold true to his musical values. Tragically, it would be Prokofiev's final symphonic statement; he died just months after the work's premiere in 1952.

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20 minutes

Music Played

  • Sergei Prokofiev

    Symphony no. 7 in C sharp minor Op.131

    Conductor: Valery Gergiev Performer: London S O.

    • PHILIPS.
    • 475-7655.
  • Sergei Prokofiev

    Symphony no. 7 in C sharp minor Op.131

    Conductor: Neeme Jarvi Performer: Scottish National Orchestra

    • CHANDOS.
    • CHAN-8442.

Credit

Role Contributor
Composer Sergei Prokofiev

Broadcast

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