Anatoly Liadov (1855 – 1914)
“From the Apocalypse”, symphonic picture, Op. 66 (1910-13)
Sergei Prokofiev (1891 – 1953)
Concerto for Piano and Orchestra No. 2 in G minor, Op. 16 (1913/23)
Sergei Rachmaninoff (1873 – 1943)
Symphonic Dances, Op. 45 (1940)
This enterprising programme presents three fascinating Russian masterpieces, each written in turbulent times. The 1910s were full of apocalyptic presentiments and grand musical designs, and even Anatoly Liadov, best known for his miniatures, was moved to write an imposing work of great visionary force. He was unable to bring it to its intended conclusion, dying just as the First World War began, and it remains a rarity on the concert platform. Prokofiev’s Second Piano Concerto was also written just before WWI, but the score disappeared from view during the upheaval of the Revolution. When it turned up a few years later, Prokofiev was already established in Paris, and he rewrote the piece, modernizing it for his demanding Paris audience. Prokofiev was also a leading virtuoso pianist, but the new version made such titanic demands on the pianist that even he was terrified. His fellow émigré Rachmaninoff had been away from Russian for more than two decades when he set to work on the Symphonic Dances, his last great masterwork. He followed with dismay the unfolding of the Second World War, although in the United States, he was removed from the direct effects of the conflict. His Dances are dark and threatening, but also lyrical and nostalgic for his distant Motherland.
Before the concert the Hotel Schweizerhof offers an exclusive two-course meal.
CHF 65 (excl. drinks)