I believe that a composer, just like a poet, sculptor or artist, should serve to people and nations.
Classic composer is a madman who is making works that his generation won’t understand.
The music gets simpler. I see how the new simplicity speaks not only about my own style, one can also find it in the works of other composers… It is, undoubtedly, the reaction on the extreme manifestations of modernism. I am evolving to the simplicity of forms, less difficult counterpoints and more melodic style, this is what I call “the new simplicity”
My inspiration does not benefit from the foreign air, for I am Russian and living in exile does not suit me.
I am indifferent to politics. I am a composer from start to finish. I am satisfied with any government that allows me to write music peacefully, that publishes everything that I am writing before the inks get dry and that performs any note coming out of my pen.
I reach for the Sun the most thanks to several geniuses that I have the honour to know. The Sun King once said “The Government is me”. You, my dear Prokofiev, could have said “The Sun is me”
His music is full of melodies, some of the parts of Le pas d'acier one can tell for the music of Mozart as if he could have lived today
Once upon a time on a sunny day I was walking down the Arbat when I saw a very unusual man. There was some challenging power about himself and he passed me by as a phenomenon. In bright yellow shoes, checkered, with red and orange tie. I could not help turning back – it was Prokofiev
To the chairman of the globe in music from the chairman of the globe in poetry. Mayakovsky to Prokofiev
This man, of course, knew all the terrible truth about his time, but he did not let it suppress him. It might be that the nature granted him with other principles and other benchmarks compared to the majority of people
The creative heritage of Prokofiev is something so harmonious that it is surprising how the 20th “spraint joints” century could have produced something like this… This sunlight was indestructible and Prokofiev carried it all the way through the troubles in life
The music was for him the all-absorbing substance, the meaning, the form of existence. Everything in the life of Prokofiev obeyed to its God. If many artists found an inspiration when confronted by the real life conflicts, Prokofiev seemed to have an autonomous “power system” and follow his internal sources rather than “ a nine-days wonder”
Prokofiev’s music can be more or less successful, or genius, but it is always pure. And then the purity is the ideal of real religion Prokofiev, as a child, used to say all what was on his mind. He could always say something wrong. All depended on his attitude to a person. I remember my first performance of Myaskovsky’s sonata, to which the author came together with Prokofiev. Sonata had a fast final. After the performance Prokofiev came to me behind the stage and said delightfully: “You know, when you were playing low I could not hear a single note.” And then he saw my face. “But when you were playing on the upper strings, he continued, these were the diamonds!” He had plenty of humour. Sometimes he made fun of the instruments.
When I was telling to Prokofiev the episodes (of Alexander Nevsky), the positions of characters, I could see him ticking the rhythms and it seemed to me that the music was conceived… Prokofiev works like clock. The clock is not fast or slow. His accuracy in time derives from his accuracy in work. It is about the absolute accuracy of the musical image