Sergei Prokofiev Piano Sonatas 1-5
Sonata No. 1 in F minor Op. 1
Sonata No. 2 in D minor Op. 14
Sonata No. 3 in A minor Op. 28
Sonata No. 4 in C minor Op. 29
Sonata No. 5 in C major Op. 38 (original version)
Peter Donohoe, piano
Recording the complete Prokofiev Sonatas with pianist Peter Donohoe had been a long-cherished ambition of SOMM’s Owner and Recording Producer, Siva Oke, who had followed his illustrious career with keen interest for many years. This has now been realised with the complete recording of the Sonatas for SOMM, enjoyably recorded at Southampton University’s Turner Sims Concert Hall on their magnificent Steinway Grand, which Peter considers ideally responsive to the composer’s demands, both technically and musically.
Recording the Prokofiev Sonatas is also an important landmark for Peter Donohoe, who first came to international recognition in Moscow in 1982, when he won Second prize at the 7th Tchaikovsky International Competition, jointly with Vladimir Ovchinnicov (there was no First Prize). Since then he has maintained close links with Russia to which he often returns on various concert engagements. He has also visited Moscow as a jury member of the 2011 Tchaikovsky Piano Competition.
Here is a small but telling excerpt from Donohoe’s “Diary of Tchaikovsky Competition 1982” written last year after 30 years, in which he reminisced about his experiences as a competition candidate. “..And this massive country, with its extremes of climate and its influence in all manner of ways upon the whole world, is reflected in its wonderful music in a way that one can really only fully understand when one has been there and soaked up the whole experience.”
Peter is no stranger to the Prokofiev Sonatas. He was asked by the publishers Boosey & Hawkes to prepare the definitive edition of the scores for them in 1985 and he also recorded Sonatas 6, 7 and 8 for EMI back in 1990. He has now added Sonatas 1 to 5 and 9 in this complete recording for the SOMM catalogue, for the first time. He has, however, performed all the Sonatas in recital at some time or other over the years, and he feels – or with typical humility he thinks – that he has come as close to them as is possible for works of such infinite depth and stylistic complexity.
Peter has written the CD liner notes for this first volume as well as the rest of the cycle, in a relaxed, informed and affectionate manner.
The second Volume comprising Sonatas 6 and 7 as well as the Prokofiev Cello Sonata in which Peter partners Raphael Wallfisch, will be released this autumn.
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