Prokofiev, Conflicted

Prokofiev was unquestionably one of the great composers of the 20th Century. But “there is something profoundly suspect about Western attitudes to this composer. Instead of subjecting him to continuous critical assessment, we repeat favourite works and shun the rest. Prokofiev makes us uneasy in ways that Ravel does not. He reminds us of things we would prefer to forget – first and foremost of our obeisance to Stalin. Yes, ours, not his.”