Sergey Prokofiev

Sonata for violin & piano No. 1 in F minor, Op. 80

    Description by Robert Cummings

    Cast in four movements of approximately equal length and lasting about a half-hour, this tormented Sonata for violin and piano must rank with Prokofiev's finest works in any genre. The Andante opening panel begins with an ominous theme in the bass on the piano, the death-rattle sounds of the violin soon entering overtop it. The mood remains tense as the violin struggles to steal center stage from the piano, finally doing so with a theme that cries out painfully. Eventually the music turns ethereal when the piano gently plays the opening theme in the upper register, while the violin delivers eerie, gossamer runs that slither about hauntingly. The movement ends softly but chillingly. A hard-driving Allegro brusco follows, its main theme slashing and harsh as the piano and violin exchange angry dissonances and crushing chords. An alternate theme imparts a sense of nobility and hope for a time, but cannot here or later dispel the sense of fear and frenzy brought on by the dominant main material. The third movement (Andante) opens with an ethereal, dreamy theme floating amid a sense of fantasy. An alternate theme, largely built on three notes that repeat obsessively, imparts a feeling of desolation, and the whole movement gradually turns darker, sounding bleak and fearful at the end. The finale, marked Allegrissimo -- Andante assai, opens with a bustling theme that seems cheerful and almost playful, but its brightness soon appears threatened by dark undercurrents and, as tension accrues from stomping bass chords from the piano, it collapses. The ending of the first movement is recalled, and the music then turns bleaker and, finally, despairing. This exceedingly profound work will yield immeasurable rewards for patient listeners.

    Parts/Movements

    1. Andante assai
    2. Allegro brusco
    3. Andante
    4. Allegrissimo

    Appears On

    Year Title Label Catalog #
    2019 Deutsche Grammophon
    2018 Nimbus Alliance NI 6368
    2018 Melodiya MELCD 1002524
    2018 Centaur Records CRC 3666
    2017 Genuin GEN 17472
    2017 Lawo Classics LWC 1118
    2017 Quartz QTZ 2119
    2017 Simax Classics PSC 1354
    2016 Afinat AR 1601
    2016 Atoll / Atoll Records ACD 513
    2016 Audite AUDITE 97722
    2016 Sony Classical 88875183382
    2016 EuroArts / Warner Classics 555050
    2016 Warner Classics 555054
    2015 Gega GD 374
    2015 Crystal Records / Crystal Records Dist. CD 882
    2015 Cobra Records 0045
    2015 Deutsche Grammophon 4794647
    2015 Genuin GEN 15547
    2014 Warner Classics 5099901928129
    2014 Hyperion CDA 67514
    2014 ATMA Classique ACD 22535
    2013 Entertainment Group 14153
    2013 Supraphon SU 41292
    2013 Centaur Records CRC 3222
    2013 Chandos CHAN 107872
    2013 Challenge Classics CC 72580
    2013 BIS BIS 2032
    2012 Deutsche Grammophon 001649002
    2012 Entertainment Group 12407
    2012 Brilliant Classics 8402
    2012 Urtext 207
    2012 Decca B 001746602
    2012 Decca
    2012 Caro Mitis CM 0042010
    2012 Phil.Harmonie PHIL 06019
    2011 Decca
    2011 Analekta AN 28763
    2011 Brilliant Classics 9242
    2011 IDIS IDIS 6622
    2010 Solo Musica 131
    2010 Dynamic 654
    2009 Haenssler 93702
    2009 Delos 3385
    2009 Chandos Classics 10540
    2009 Decca
    2009 UCJ 044002880338
    2009 Sony Classical Essential Classics 7530812
    2009 EMI Classics / Warner Classics 5099926413
    2008 Brilliant 8712
    2008 CAvi-music 8553122
    2008 Deutsche Grammophon 4777434
    2008 Canary Classics 2
    2008 Sony Classical Essential Classics 721741
    2007 Cypres Records 1646
    2006 Philips 4757460
    2006 Biddulph Recordings 80204
    2006 Artek 29
    2006 Brilliant 7614
    2006 Warner Classics
    2006 Ottavo 79136
    2006 Erato
    2006 Cambria 1096
    2006 Warner Classics 63263
    2005 EMI Classics 659642
    2004 Deutsche Grammophon 474648
    2004 Artemis Classics 1555
    2004 Warner Classics / Warner Music 4617562
    2004 Dutton Laboratories 9736
    2003 Warner Classics 0927-49147-2
    2003 Warner Classics 0927-49637-2
    2003 Apex 4606232
    2003 Scandinavian Classics 220512-205
    2003 Avie 0023
    2002 ASV PLT8516
    2002 Ondine 807
    2002 Naxos 8555904
    2002 Bridge 9118
    2001 Accademia Musical Val 40001
    2001 EMI Music Distribution 565962
    2001 Harmonia Mundi 2907301/10
    2001 Angel Records 61887
    2001 Cavalli 241
    2000 Analekta 23145
    1999 Praga 256007
    1999 Harmonia Mundi HMU90 7237
    1998 Orfeo D'Or 489981
    1998 Harmonia Mundi 911656
    1997 EMI Music Distribution 66605
    1996 Sony Classical 67196
    1996 Connoisseur Society 4204
    1996 Sony Classical 64534
    1995 Philips 446091
    1995 Erato 10698
    1995 London 440926
    1994 Vanguard Classics 4080
    1994 RCA 61454
    1994 Kontrapunkt 32185
    1993 Olympia (Classical/Jazz) 355
    1993 Praga 250041
    1992 Deutsche Grammophon 431803
    1989 ASV CDDCA 667
    SNE 617
    Finlandia
    Brilliant 8712/7
    Brilliant Classics 8402/4
    Arlecchino 9
    Chandos 6659
    Arion 268254
    Musidisc 291462
    Virgin 59023
    Nuova Era 7326
    Decca 475 6712DF2
    Vox 9013
    Forlane 16509
    Apex
    Pyramid Records 13496
    Musical Heritage 5091707