The late Patric Standford may have written these short pieces deliberately to provoke our feedback. If so, his success is reflected in the rich range of readers' comments appearing at the foot of most of the pages.
The Russian composer Sergey Prokofiev was born 27 April 1891 in the Ukraine and died 5 March 1953 in Moscow. We might be forgiven for imagining a two-work composer: the Classical Symphony and Peter and the Wolf. His true output was extensive and richly varied.
Defining Our Field - John Dante Prevedini asks what is 'classical music' to us, why are we involved and what can we learn from our differences?
Ensemble. A Fitting Environmentalist Update - Adam J Sacks listens to Prokofiev in Hong Kong
Ensemble. Christmas is for Concerts - Giuseppe Pennisi makes his festive choice from the Italian media
The Therapeutic Power of Music - Giuseppe Pennisi writes about Christmas in music for children in Italy
CD Spotlight. Highly Enjoyable - Gerald Fenech listens to film music played by Iain Sutherland and the Philharmonic Promenade Orchestra. '... brought to light with the utmost conviction.'
CD Spotlight. Soulful Awareness - Patrick Maxwell listens to Margarita Gritskova and Maria Prinz performing Prokofiev songs. '... played with a precise and enjoyable dexterity and with admirable clarity; the collection as a whole deserves to be celebrated.'
CD Spotlight. Audacious Symphonic Language - Prokofiev's Symphonies Nos 3 and 6 played by the Deutsche Radio Philharmonie, heard by Gerald Fenech. 'Pietari Inkinen and his German ensemble are on top form and both symphonies receive compelling interpretations full of cohesive and dynamic playing.'
CD Spotlight. Prevailing Classicism - Music by Prokofiev for the cello, reviewed by Gerald Fenech. 'Conductor, soloists and orchestra get under Prokofiev's skin with renditions full of fire and energy, spiced with a Slavonic spirit that complements the texture of the music - mesmerising virtuosity matched only by the genius of the composer.'
Ensemble. Sheer Contrast - Prokofiev and Beethoven symphonies from the Hallé Orchestra and Mark Elder, impressing Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. From the Poignant to the Zany - Russian-born musicians Yulia Northridge and Ekaterina Shetliffe, heard by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. A Supernatural Glow - Giuseppe Pennisi describes the Fiery Angel that hangs over Rome
Vital Work - Margaret Fingerhut's UK piano recital tour raising awareness of the needs of refugees, recommended by Mike Wheeler
Profile. Genuine Artistic Perspectives - George Colerick discusses the music of Sergei Prokofiev with reference to the Soviet authorities
CD Spotlight. A Strong Impression - Prokofiev's ballet 'Romeo and Juliet' impresses Gerald Fenech. '... this interpretation has passion and drama aplenty, and climaxes are handled with meticulous control.'
Ensemble. No Sex Please, We're Romeo and Juliet - Giuseppe Pennisi was at Rome's Terme di Caracalla for a new production of Prokofiev's ballet
CD Spotlight. Colourful Performance - Dmitrij Kitajenko conducts Mussorgsky and Prokofiev, heard by Stephen Francis Vasta. 'Vladislav Sulimsky sings with feeling in a compact, reasonably firm baritone ...'
CD Spotlight. Absolutely unmissable - Prokofiev's 'Ivan the Terrible', recommended by Gerald Fenech. '... a blockbuster of an issue which should delight both film score collectors and Prokofiev admirers in equal measure.'
Vigorously Rhetorical - A piano recital by Martin James Bartlett, heard by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. Tender and Charming - Lisa Batiashvili plays Prokofiev, enjoyed by Giuseppe Pennisi
Ensemble. An Effective Combination - Music for viola and harp from Oliver Wass and Luba Tunnicliffe, reviewed by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. Impish Undercurrents - Prokofiev, Hummel, Sibelius and Mendelssohn from Clare Hammond, Sinfonia Viva and Duncan Ward, found irresistible by Mike Wheeler
CD Spotlight. Explosive Classics - A Chandos orchestral compilation, enjoyed by Gerald Fenech. '... the programme is as explosive as one can hope for.'
CD Spotlight. Bags of Fun - Music for flute and piano, heard by the late Howard Smith. '... eminently commendable.'
Ensemble. Concerts in Bucharest - Giuseppe Pennisi listens to Russian orchestral music at the George Enescu Festival
CD Spotlight. A Relative Newcomer - Temirzhan Yerzhanov plays Prokofiev, heard by the late Howard Smith. '... idiosyncratic, superbly delineated invention and precise harmonic intuition.'
Ensemble. A Renewed International Chigiana Prize - Giuseppe Pennisi was in Siena for the Chigiana Award concert
Ensemble. High Ambitions - Michael Landes was at the American Protégé Winners' recital on 14 May 2017 in Carnegie Hall
Ensemble. 1917 - A Different Revolutionary Music - Giuseppe Pennisi listens to Yuri Bashmet and his Moscow Soloists ensemble
CD Spotlight. Consistently Vibrant - Prokofiev's Symphonies Nos 4 and 7, heard by Gerald Fenech. 'Andrew Litton and his Bergen ensemble deliver some forceful performances full of exciting vigour ...'
CD Spotlight. Many Fine Things - Mariss Jansons conducts Prokofiev, heard by Stephen Francis Vasta. '... round and solidly grounded ...'
Ensemble. All the Magic of the Original - Piano arrangements played by Jenny Lin, enjoyed by Mike Wheeler
CD Spotlight. Engagingly Delivered - Robert Meyer's 'Discovering the Double Bass', heard by the late Howard Smith. '... a rare and welcome initiative ...'
CD Spotlight. Exceedingly Fine - Marin Alsop conducts Prokofiev's Symphony No 6, heard by Gerald Fenech. 'The São Paolo Symphony Orchestra plays with a consummate passion for the music.'
CD Spotlight. Technical Prowess - Jerry Wong plays Prokofiev, heard by the late Howard Smith. '... Wong characterizes the contrasting moods unerringly.'
Ensemble. Stand-out Performers - Michael Landes attends an American Protégé winners' recital
Ensemble. Vividly Coloured - Prokofiev from the BBC Philharmonic, reviewed by Mike Wheeler
CD Spotlight. A True Poet - Vadym Kholodenko plays Prokofiev, recommended by Geoff Pearce. '... a majestic, lovely recording, full of colour and detail.'
CD Spotlight. Expertly Sculpted - James Brawn's time traveller recital delights Andrew Schartmann. 'Each time a passage repeats ... Brawn shows us something new.'
Ensemble. Mirrors of Time - Special concerts in Rome, enjoyed by Giuseppe Pennisi
Ensemble. Well Served - Mike Wheeler listens to Joo Yeon Sir and Irina Andrievsky
CD Spotlight. Excellent on All Fronts - Music for cello and orchestra, recommended by Gerald Fenech. 'Jamie Walton exudes warm and committed performances ...'
CD Spotlight. First Class - Prokofiev symphonies, recommended by Geoff Pearce. '... Karabits has a real empathy with Prokofiev ...'
Musical Prowess - Robert Anderson's 'Opera Nights and Nightmares', read by Gerald Fenech
Ensemble. Woman for all Seasons - Gerald Fenech returns to Festival Maribor in Slovenia
Ensemble. A Special Aura - Malcolm Miller describes Goldsmith College's special tribute to Alexander Ivashkin
CD Spotlight. Astonishing Performances - Early recordings by Nelson Freire impress Gerald Fenech. 'An ideal set for ... all who admire this truly great soloist.'
Ensemble. Champagne not Orange Juice - Prokofiev's 'The Love of Three Oranges', reviewed by Giuseppe Pennisi
CD Spotlight. Subtle Nuance - Steven Osborne plays Musorgsky and Prokofiev, recommended by Ron Bierman. 'This is an outstanding release.'
DVD Spotlight. Dedicated Teamwork - Prokofiev's The Fiery Angel, reviewed by Robert Anderson. '... forceful and compelling ...'
Beautifully Spun - Steven Osborne's Prokofiev, Ravel and Rachmaninov impress Keith Bramich
A Compelling Overall Experience - Mike Wheeler listens to Italian pianist Leonora Armellini
CD Spotlight. Collaborative Effect - Martha Argerich and friends in Lugano, heard by Barbara Sealock. 'Among the recorded gems of 2013 ...'
CD Spotlight. Harmonic Daring - Orchestral music by Prokofiev, heard by Gerald Fenech. 'The São Paulo Symphony respond with great sensitivity ...'
Ensemble. A Runaway Success - Juanjo Mena and the BBC Philharmonic impress Mike Wheeler
CD Spotlight. Distinctive Skillfulness - Musical stories for narrator and orchestra, heard by Howard Smith. 'Prokofiev, Britten and Dukas slot together to vivid effect.'
Ensemble. Monumental Effect - Three companies combine forces, experienced by Maria Nockin
Ensemble. Mother Russia - Works by Rimsky-Korsakov, Tchaikovsky and Prokofiev, enjoyed by Suzanne Torrey
Ensemble. Fairy-tale Magic - Mike Wheeler listens to the Dresden Philharmonic Orchestra
Lucidity of Touch - Leonora Armellini plays for the Keyboard Trust, heard by Bill Newman
Ensemble. Total Rapport - Jonathan Dormand and Marisa Gupta's Fauré, Brahms and Prokofiev impress Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. Intertwining Counterpoint - The St Petersburg Symphony Orchestra, heard by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. A Notable Evening - Music by Prokofiev, Tchaikovsky and Taneyev, reviewed by Malcolm Miller
Ensemble. An Erotic Flavour - Rome's new production of Prokofiev's 'Romeo and Juliet', reviewed by Giuseppe Pennisi
Delicacy and Clarity - Bill Newman listens to young Chinese pianist Jianing Kong
CD Spotlight. Excellent Throughout - Shostakovich and Prokofiev string quartets, heard by Howard Smith. '... flawless technical address and heartfelt aim ...'
Wonderful Performances - Latvian magic from pianist Reinis Zarins, heard by Bill Newman
Ensemble. Superb Playing - Bill Newman listens to a selection of instrumental chamber music in London
Ensemble. Thrilled Beyond Measure - Jurowski conducts the LPO, heard by Bill Newman
CD Spotlight. Stylish Playing - Some recommended commercial recordings, heard by Bill Newman. 'How dare they!'
Ensemble. 2011 Specials - A roundup of London concerts enjoyed by Bill Newman, featuring recitals by Alice Sara Ott, the Emerson Quartet, Martin Fröst and Roland Pontinen, the Orchestra of the Polish EU Presidency, Kreeta-Julia Heikkilä and Roope Grondahl, and Martino Tirimo's Rosamunde Trio
Ensemble. Plenty to Bite Into - Derby Concert Orchestra celebrates Christmas, heard by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. Thoughtful Performance - Derby Bach Choir's Christmas concert, reviewed by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. Brilliant Throughout - Kirill Karabits conducts the RPO, reviewed by Bill Newman
CD Spotlight. Lyric Expressiveness - Russian music for cello and piano, recommended by Howard Smith. '... much here to praise ...'
Ensemble. Rapturous Praises - Yasmin Rowe, Sarah Sew and Tadashi Imai at London's Wigmore Hall, heard by Bill Newman
CD Spotlight. Eyes of History - Piano music by Mussorgsky and Prokofiev, heard by Robert Anderson. '... good value ...'
Ensemble. Dance Rhythms - A visit from the Moscow Philharmonic, reviewed by Mike Wheeler
Persuasive Simplicity - Serghei Constantinov at Steinway Hall in London, reviewed by Bill Newman
CD Spotlight. Compelling and Pleasurable - Arthur Friedheim plays Liszt, Chopin, Gottschalk and Henselt, heard by Patric Standford. '... a slightly improvisatory interpretation ...'
Ensemble. Musical Outlooks - Bill Newman attends a selection of concerts at London's Wigmore Hall
Profile. Humanizing Emotions - American conductor James Conlon talks to Maria Nockin
Ensemble. Poise and Vitality - Mike Wheeler listens to Lucille Burns and Catherine Milledge
Think Again - A late review of Anvil (and some musings on classical music equivalents), by Gordon Rumson
Ensemble. High Standards - Bill Newman listens to various artists at London's Wigmore Hall
CD Spotlight. Deeply Satisfying - Elena Kuschnerova plays J S Bach, selected by Howard Smith. '... decisive and fresh as a dewfall.'
Drama and Poetry - Mary Isaac listens to Russian pianist Olga Stezhko
Command and Panache - Russian pianist Rustem Kudoyarov, heard by Mary Isaac
Ensemble. Much to Enjoy - Johannes Goritzki and Julian Jacobson at London's Royal College of Music, heard by Robert Anderson
CD Spotlight. Striking Musicianship - Elena Kuschnerova plays Prokofiev, heard by Howard Smith. '... sparkling, lyrical and appropriately balletic ...'
Ensemble. Better Late than Never - The BPSE Late Summer Festival, attended by Malcolm Troup
Ensemble. Highly Effective - Bax, Chopin and Prokofiev from Artur Pizarro, Mark Elder and the Hallé Orchestra, reviewed by Mike Wheeler
Spokesman for Soviet Society? - Colin Albin discusses Shostakovich and the state
Beautifully Subtle - Bobby Chen launches Derby Chamber Music's new season, heard by Mike Wheeler
CD Spotlight. Beautifully Considered - Music for violin and viola, heard by Howard Smith. 'Braun has a firm, bright, highly focused tone ...'
Ensemble. When God and Man Collide - Giuseppe Pennisi visits the Salzburg Festival to investigate 'the downfall of the myth and the spirit of the music'
Ensemble. Performance to Cherish - Lawrence Budmen submits a further report from the Tanglewood Festival 2010
Ensemble. Impeccable Standards - Bill Newman's pick of June and July concerts at London's Wigmore Hall
Ensemble. A Remarkable Event - Paul Sarcich visits the West Cork Chamber Music Festival
Ensemble. Bewildering Variety - 'The Love of Three Oranges' at Grange Park Opera, reviewed by Robert Hugill
Ensemble. A Cross Section - Bill Newman comments on some recent concerts at London's Wigmore Hall
Ensemble. An Ideal Balance - An evening with the Northern Sinfonia and friends delights Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. Charm and Elan - Vladimir Ashkenazy, Ingrid Fliter and the Cleveland Orchestra, heard by Lawrence Budmen
Ensemble. Black Comedy - Prokofiev's 'The Gambler' impresses Robert Hugill
CD Spotlight. A Spectral Atmosphere - Murray McLachlan plays music by Shostakovich and friends, recommended by Howard Smith. '... an outright triumph for the label and for McLachlan.'
Ensemble. A True Dynamo - Lawrence Budmen listens to French conductor Ludovic Morlot, in concert with Jennifer Koh and the New World Symphony
CD Spotlight. Such Clarity - Piano music by Prokofiev, heard by Robert Anderson. '... enviable simplicity and beauty of tone.'
World-ranking Pianism - Malcolm Troup marvels anew at the artistry of Julian Jacobson
CD Spotlight. Exquisitely Nuanced - Steve Davislim sings Vierne and Chausson, recommended by Howard Smith. 'I cannot think of higher praise.'
Ensemble. Exceptional Gifts - Lawrence Budmen reports from the 2009 Miami International Piano Festival
CD Spotlight. Extrovert Optimism - Piano music by Benjamin Lees, recommended by Patric Standford. '... a pleasant surprise ...'
Ensemble. Exciting Results - A new partnership between Charles Dutoit and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, experienced by Mike Wheeler
Vigorous and Declamatory - Sacha Grynyuk plays for Derby Chamber Music, heard by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. A Complete Success - An evening long retelling of the 'Romeo and Juliet' story, reviewed by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. Shade and Nuance - Chamber music by Julian Dawes, appreciated by Malcolm Miller
CD Spotlight. Pride of Place - Piano music by Frank Bridge, praised by Howard Smith. 'A standing ovation for Mark Bebbington ...'
Rare Talent - Young Concert Artists Trust recitals, reviewed by Bill Newman
Committed and Tough - Malcolm Troup plays Bloch's Piano Sonata, appreciated by Julian Jacobson
Ensemble. Podium Celebrity - Valery Gergiev and the Mariinsky Orchestra in Florida, reviewed by Lawrence Budmen
Ensemble. High Spirits - Freddy Kempf and the Moscow Philharmonic, heard by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. Intense Leadership - Sierra, Ginastera and Rachmaninov conducted by Alasdair Neale, reviewed by Lawrence Budmen
Ensemble. A Real Barnburner - Another report from this summer's Tanglewood Festival, by Lawrence Budmen
Ensemble. Restrained Passion - Valeriy Sokolov and Eric Ferrand-N'Kaoua play Bach, Beethoven, Schumann, Enescu and Prokofiev, heard by Bill Newman
Ensemble. Poetic Touches - The Russian State Symphony Orchestra plays Musorgsky, Prokofiev and Rakhmaninov, reviewed by Mike Wheeler
Penetrating Musical Insight - Evgenia Rubinova plays Chopin with the Orchestra of Opera North in Huddersfield and Leeds, heard by Patric Standford
Unflagging Energy - Nicola Meecham plays Haydn, Schubert, Ravel, Prokofiev and Gershwin, reviewed by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. A Memorable Concert - Chloë Hanslip, Slatkin and the RPO, reviewed by Malcolm Miller
Ensemble. Wonderfully Vivid - Robert Hugill praises Grange Park Opera's production of Prokofiev's 'The Gambler'
CD Spotlight. A Heady Mix - Havergal Brian's Symphonies 4 and 12, reviewed by Paul Sarcich. '... Adrian Leaper marshals his enormous forces well ...'
Ensemble. Silvery Tone - A recital by Serena Leader and Gordon Back, reviewed by Malcolm Miller
DVD Spotlight. Outlandish Curses - 'The Love of Three Oranges', reviewed by Robert Anderson. '... much applause for Prokofiev's imagination ...'
Ensemble. Three Premières - Malcolm Miller applauds the latest concert of music by Julian Dawes
DVD Spotlight. Maximum Sensuality - Prokofiev's 'Romeo and Juliet', reviewed by Robert Anderson. '... suggests Tristan and Isolde ...'
Ensemble. All Good Things ... - Malcolm Tattersall's final report from the 2006 Australian Festival of Chamber Music
CD Spotlight. Widely Divergent Composers - Music for violin and piano, reviewed by George Balcombe. '... clear and consistent ...'
Ensemble. Energy and Style - A concert by the Boca Raton Philharmonic Symphonia, reviewed by Lawrence Budmen
DVD Spotlight. Chill lyricism - Prokofiev's 'Ivan the Terrible', reviewed by Robert Anderson. 'Vello Pähn and the orchestra make a marvellous thing of Prokofiev's score ...'
Ensemble. Bravura virtuosity - Lawrence Budmen was at the Miami International Piano Festival
Provocations - Alistair Hinton and Chad Wozniak discuss Patric Standford's recent 'Provocative Thoughts'
Ensemble. Delicate confidence - Kelly Ferjutz was at the Cleveland International Piano Competition
Ensemble. Darkness to light - Malcolm Tattersall is at the Australian Festival of Chamber Music
CD Spotlight. Often ravishing - Music by Debussy, Prokofiev, Britten and Ravel, reviewed by Robert Anderson. '... admirably encompassed ...'
Ensemble. A memorable evening - Maurice Hasson's 70th birthday recital with Gabriela Montero was a notable 2005 Wigmore Hall event for Bill Newman
Ensemble. Sizzling Prokofiev - A recital by Adam Neiman, reviewed by Lawrence Budmen
Record box. Efficient and sensitive - A Philip Amalong piano recital, reviewed by Patric Standford
Ensemble. Muscular performance - Rex Harley is left breathless listening to violinist Chloë Hanslip
Ensemble. Pianistic excellence - John Lill and Prokofiev's Eighth Sonata at sixty, enjoyed by Malcolm Miller
A passionate campaign - Tamami Honma's Wigmore Hall solo recital début impresses Keith Bramich
Profile. To be a composer - Ron Bierman continues his feature about Benjamin Lees
CD Spotlight. Generous lyricism - Russian cello sonatas, investigated by Robert Anderson. '... alert and accomplished.'
Ensemble. An imposing start - David Thompson was at the First Night of the BBC Proms in London.
CD Spotlight. An indelible impression - Ewa Podles sings Russian songs and arias, appreciated by Maria Nockin. '... incredibly well done ...'
CD Spotlight - Proud defiance - '... a marvellous sense of immediacy ...' - Bill Newman discusses a new recording of Prokofiev's 'War and Peace'