- Cinderella, ballet, Op. 87
Prokofiev: Cinderellaby Michail Jurowski
Prokofiev's ballet Cinderella is a stranger piece than meets the ear, if the context of its composition is taken into account. Prokofiev had been lured back to the Soviet Union in 1936, persuaded by a host of commissions from Stalin's regime and a lingering feeling of homesickness. Yet the move to Moscow brought with it extreme restrictions on his artistic vision: music was to reflect the ideals of Socialist Realism, glorifying the struggle of the "working people," and dire consequences awaited any composer who thought otherwise. Premiered in 1945, Cinderella managed to have its cake and eat it too, becoming one of Prokofiev's greatest homeland successes. The regime could crow about how Cinderella triumphs in the end because of her selfless work ethic and patient opposition to her stepfamily's bourgeois lifestyle (despite her own bourgeois rewards, including a fancy new carriage, a trip to the ball, and a prince for a husband). Prokofiev, on the other hand, could ignore all this -- after all, a fairy tale is just a fairy tale -- and revel in the story's multitude of colorful characters. He infused the tale with the spacious, almost naive musical language of his lyrical later years, the time of the Fifth Symphony and Romeo and Juliet. Michail Jurowski and the WDR Sinfonieorchester Kouml;ln bring out the cozy, modest qualities of the score, shunning the extremes of gruff violence and syrupy sentimentality to create that once-upon-a-time feeling. The winds are often called upon for virtuosic and colorful displays, and the recording captures their fine efforts with subtlety and delicacy.
- Release Date:
- Cpo Records
Performance CreditsMichail Jurowski Primary Artist
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