Going to the movies with Prokofiev

Prokofiev's big screen scores are performed with humour and precision under the direction of Neeme Järvi

Composer: Prokofiev
Repertoire: On Guard for Peace; Symphonic Suite from The Queen of Spades
Artists: Soloists, RSNO & Chorus/Neeme Järvi
Rating:  3/5
Genre: Vocal/Orchestral
Label: Chandos CHAN 10519

Two very cinematic scores from Prokofiev: one is real movie-music, a realisation by Michael Berkeley of the Russian composer’s unfinished sketches for a film of The Queen of Spades. Crisply performed, it is full of the typically side-stepping harmonies and dry humour you’d expect. The oratorio On Guard for Peace has a ‘big tune’ that hooks into your ear; it’s not first-rate Prokofiev but there’s an enticingly light touch to the music. The well-drilled non-Russian choir is convincing, the boy soprano’s sweet, rich sound is impressive and the dark-voiced Slavic mezzo provides a fabulously throaty narration.