Prokofiev, opera and theatre: a case study of The Gambler

Guillaumier, C. (2010) Prokofiev, opera and theatre: a case study of The Gambler. Musicorum, 8. pp. 67-101.

Abstract

Prokofiev's first mature opera, Igrok (The gambler) was a radical work that was, in many ways, ahead of its time. Some of the changes the composer made to the 1917 version of the opera when he came to revise it a decade later are considered. In the process of discussing these revisions, the insights into the nature of Prokofiev's theatrical instinct. The composer's operatic ideal depended primarily on the crafting of a theatrical rhythm that would shape the entire work. Characterization and declamation techniques also play a crucial role in controlling the work's internal rhythm and in achieving a degree of dramatic realism.

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