Symphonic Song (Prokofiev)

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Sergei Prokofiev's Symphonic Song (Russian: Симфоническая песнь), Op. 57, was written in 1933.


Symphonic Song is a work demonstrating Prokofiev's transition from Parisian modernism to Soviet lyricism. Prokofiev had described of it as "a serious piece of work, and I took great care in choosing the thematic material. It consists of three closely integrated parts."

Although there is no programme, the mood of the three parts might be defined as:

  • Darkness: A dark and gloomy theme emerges. Crushing brass chords and eerie string sonorities add tension to the music.
  • Struggle: The music becomes livelier, but there are still occasional dissonant outbursts.
  • Achievement: A lyrical melody soars freely, and the music ends in ecstatic triumph.

The work lasts around 13 minutes, and is in one continuous movement.


The music is scored for piccolo, 2 flutes, 2 oboes, english horn, 2 clarinets, bass clarinet, 2 bassoons, contrabassoon, 4 horns, 3 trumpets, 3 trombones, tuba, timpani, cymbals, triangle, bass drum, snare drum, tambourine, strings.


14/04/1934, Moscow, conducted by Alexander Gauk.


Orchestra Conductor Record Company Year of Recording Format
Scottish National Orchestra Neeme Järvi Chandos Records 1989 CD
USSR Ministry of Culture State Symphony Orchestra Gennadi Rozhdestvensky Melodiya ? LP

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