Prokofiev: Symphonies 1 & 2 - Bournemouth SO/Karabits

Classic FM Drive Featured Album, 3 November 2014.

Kirill Karabits and the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra began their Prokofiev Symphony cycle with a release of the composer's Symphonies Nos. 3 and 7. It set a high standard and this second album in the series has been eagerly awaited.

This chapter charts Prokofiev's development as a symphonist - from the charming but little-performed Sinfonietta, a close cousin to the first Classical Symphony - through to the strident, modernist Symphony No.2, composed in Paris in 1924. This work was to be 'as hard as iron and steel' the composer said. 

Closing this album is the early symphonic poem Autumnal Sketch, sounding like a mixture of Richard Strauss and Scriabin. 

As with the first album in the series, Karabits gets an authentically Russian kind of darkness out of the orchestra for the second Symphony, counterbalanced by the vivid, bright and lightness of touch for the first.