‘Looking at the familiar from an unexpected perspective’ is Lera Auerbach’s intention in her 24 Preludes for cello and piano. Each prelude is in a different key, just like in Bach’s Wohltemperiertes Klavier. After colleagues such as Chopin and Shostakovich, Lera Auerbach took inspiration to write an impressive cycle of musical miniatures, each with its own, sometimes mysterious, character. She is joined on stage with her long-time friend, cellist Ani Aznavoorian.
The last piece pf the concert is the popular Sonata for violin and piano by Sergei Prokofiev. It is an arrangement of his Sonata for flute and piano, which Prokofiev completed in 1943, when he and many other Russian artists were evacuated from Moscow after the German invasion. In his new home in Alma-Ata he started to work on a flute sonata, which was premiered the following year by flutist Nicolaj Karkovsky and pianist Sviatoslav Richter. In the audience was violinist David Oistrach, who became so enthusiastic that he asked Prokofiev for a version for violin and piano. Jean-Pierre Rampal put the flute version on his repertoire, Oistrach did the same with the violin arrangement, so that the sparkling virtuoso piece had two world-famous musicians as ambassadors.
Lera Auerbach also made an arrangement of this Prokofiev sonata for piano trio, and at the request of the Verbier Festival 2015 she arranged the trio for oboe, cello and piano.