ELENA FIRSOVA (b.1950): For Alissa, Op. 102, ALISSA FIRSOVA (b.1986): Lune Rouge, Op. 13, DMITRI SMIRNOV (b.1948): Piano Sonata No. 6, Op. 157 ”Blake Sonata”, SERGEI RACHMANINOV (1873-1943): Sonata No. 2, Op. 36 (original version), Variations on a Theme of Corelli, Op. 42.
Catalogue Number: 11R073
Description: Firsova's piece for her daughter is a set of variations on the theme of a much earlier song by the composer. Harmonically wayward, it sounds like something Scriabin might have done had he continued on his late path for quite some time. The dark, haunting coda is based on an idea from Smirnov's Blake opera 'Tiriel', which ties it to his sonata-portrait of the English visionary poet. The work is based on a musical cryptogram of the composer's name, and incorporates imagery from Blake's poetry, notably 'Tyger, Tyger', which leads to some powerful, menacing, incandescent piano textures, and also the 'symmetry' of palindromes and the work's rondo-esque form. The piano writing is virtuosic and thrilling; the harmonic language, while advanced, more centered than the Firsova. The younger Firsova's piece is more impressionistic, with definite key centers, an atmospheric evocation of a moonlit seascape. Alissa Firsova (piano).