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Prokofiev Sonata No. 8 #2757555
08/10/18 10:48 PM
08/10/18 10:48 PM
Joined: Jul 2018
Posts: 8
reunegade Offline OP
Junior Member
reunegade  Offline OP
Junior Member

Joined: Jul 2018
Posts: 8
I want to learn the third movement of this piece. How does this compare to the likes of Prokofiev's Toccata, Sonata No. 3, or other movements from his sonatas? From looking at the score, it does not seem too difficult minus the ending, so why is it considered one of the hardest sonata movements by Prokofiev?

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Re: Prokofiev Sonata No. 8 [Re: reunegade] #2758479
08/14/18 07:52 PM
08/14/18 07:52 PM
Joined: Feb 2010
Posts: 2,654
San Jose, CA
jeffreyjones Offline
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jeffreyjones  Offline
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Joined: Feb 2010
Posts: 2,654
San Jose, CA
OK, so this is one of Prokofiev's three "War Sonatas" that he wrote during the time of WWII. They are No. 6, 7, and 8. I think they are as important in the history of the piano as Beethoven's Op. 109-111. There is such depth to this music, and they're a magnificent product of their time. They're also priceless personal records of reactions to the horrors of the worst war that the world has ever known. Their provenance was heightened even more by the incredible patronage from Russian pianists of the quality of Richter, Horowitz, Ashkenazy and Gilels among others.

So to begin with, anyone playing these pieces for an informed audience is doing so against the backdrop of some of the finest and most historically significant recordings ever made using a piano.

As for Sonata No. 8 itself, all three of the movements are large-scaled, complex, and more difficult to interpret than they are to play. It doesn't set any new standards for virtuosity, but it is a big test of endurance, concentration and musical understanding. So I wouldn't expect that the first time you learn the notes and play them from the beginning to the end of the piece, that it's going to sound like anything special. It will take time to grow in you and gain depth.

Moderated by  Brendan, Kreisler 

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