CDFundación BBVA-NEOS Collection

Works for Piano

Nikolay A. Roslavets

Irina Emeliantseva

Arts > Music and Opera

This new addition to the Fundación BBVA-NEOS collection is doubly welcome, given the troubled history of Roslavets’ work. The piano works selected are a stimulating introduction to the man Shostakovich considered to be ‘the most interesting Russian composer of the 20th century’.

Born in 1881, Nikolay Andreyevich Roslavets was a self-taught musician until his entry, at age 21, to the Moscow Conservatory, where he studied violin and composition. One decade later he would win the Silver Medal for his diploma work, an opera titled ‘Heaven and Earth’. A modernist composer, aligned with the artists and writers of the futurist current and eager to explore new directions in music, he had first-hand experience of the twelve-tone technique but preferred to adopt his own system of between six- and nine-note sonorities – what he called ‘synthetic chords’ –giving rise to highly chromatic fields. Despite his support for the ideas of the 1917 revolution and creative efforts on behalf of the new regime, in 1930 his work was banned as alien to the tenets of ‘proleterian music’. The name of Roslavets disappeared from the dictionaries and after his death in 1944, his home was looted and many of his scores stolen or disfigured. Indeed some of these pieces are among those appearing on this CD, as restored by music publisher ‘Schott under the supervision of Efrosinya Roslavets, the composer’s niece and also the architect of his rehabilitation.

Performances by:
Irina Emeliantseva, piano


CD Audio:

1–3. 3 Compositions (02:49)
4–6. 3 Etudes (14:16)
7. Sonata No. 1 (10:51)
8. Prelude (03:24)
9–10. 2 Compositions (05:43)
11. Sonata No. 2 (12:14)
12–13. 2 Poems (04:10)
14–18. 5 Preludes (08:53)
19. Sonata No. 5 (11:26)

Total time: 74:21