In this book the author has attempted to combine the biography of Sergei Prokofiev with brief descriptions of his most important works and some observations on his creative style.

Addressing his work to a wide audience, the author has insofar as possible avoided specialized musical terminology. Because of the great quantity of the material considered, it has been impossible to give more detailed analyses of the various works and the peculiarities of their musical language. This interesting task will undoubtedly be dealt with by many Soviet and foreign students of Prokofiev. The author will be happy if his work, even in some small measure, will help to popularize Prokofiev's music and to further scholarly study of it.

The biographical part of the book is largely based upon the composer's Autobiography, which was first published in full in the volume S. S. Prokofiev: Materials, Documents, and Reminiscences, compiled by S. I. Schlifstein (State Music Publishers, Moscow, 1956). Quotations from the Autobiography are given throughout without reference to the source.

The author has also made wide use of articles on Prokofiev published at various times in the Soviet Union and abroad, notes of conversations with the composer during the years 1940-47, and materials published in the pre-revolutionary Russian, Soviet, and foreign press between 1908 and 1953.

The comments of Prokofiev's closest friends and colleagues, N. Ya. Miaskovsky and B. V. Asafyev(Igor Glebov), have been given a special place in this book. It is the author's intention that these companions of Prokofiev's creative life should be, along with the composer himself, the dramatis personae of this narrative. The articles, memoirs, and letters of these outstanding musicians, as well as personal conversations with them, have been of considerable help in the writing of this book.

The author as also made use of many of Prokofiev's unpublished manuscripts (music, letters, etc.) preserved in the Central State Archive of Literature and Art, the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the U.S.S.R., the Glinka Central Museum of Musical Culture, and the personal files of I. S. Asafyeva and L. T. Atovmyan. In addition, the author has drawn . . .

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