Prokofiev's Piano Sonatas
A Guide for the Listener and the Performer
Imprint: Yale University Press
Boris Berman, renowned concert pianist and teacher, is one of the world’s foremost authorities on Sergei Prokofiev. In this book, he draws on his intimate knowledge of Prokofiev’s work to guide music lovers and pianists through the composer’s nine piano sonatas. These cherished works, composed between 1910 and 1951, are today considered an indispensable part of the repertoire of every serious concert pianist.
The book, written with a deep appreciation of Prokofiev’s style and creativity, looks at the sonatas within the context of Prokofiev’s complete oeuvre. Berman provides general information about each sonata and a discussion of the composition’s details and features, and he offers suggestions for interpretation and specific advice for performing. Berman also corrects for the first time various misprints in published scores and includes a helpful glossary of musical terms.
“Berman’s book opens up Prokofiev’s musical language marvellously. There is a chapter each for all nine piano sonatas, with a general discussion, then a detailed but accessible analysis, then a ‘masterclass’ with suggestions for performance practice. Berman briefly traverses his life, musical influences, style and context.”—Barney Zwartz, The Age (Australia)
“Berman has a vast knowledge of Russian sources—almost completely unknown in the West—and Russian traditions as well as international experience as a performer. He brings a wealth of new ideas and new information. His new book is invaluable.”—Alexander Ivashkin, Centre for Russian Music, Goldsmiths College, University of London
“Having performed and recorded (to acclaim) Prokofiev’s piano sonatas, Professor Berman has a unique point of view to offer in writing about one of the twentieth century’s most important collections of piano works. An important, personal, and original work.”—Boaz Sharon, University of Florida
“Drawing from a wide cultural background and vast experience as performer and teacher, Boris Berman has fashioned a remarkable guide to the Prokofiev piano sonatas.”—Jerome Lowenthal, Juilliard School
“A lucid and originally conceived book from one of the most respected performers of this music—essential reading for the enquiring listener and the skilled performer alike.”—Christopher Elton, Royal Academy of Music, London
“This new book by Boris Berman is a must read for those who care about the music of Prokofiev. It is a very in-depth guide by someone who has obviously spent many years thinking about and playing the music of this great genius. Bravo to Boris Berman!”—Yefim Bronfman