Prokofiev: Visions Fugitives, Op. 22
The Visions Fugitives (1915-17) are prefaced by some lines of Konstantin
Balmonts: "In every fugitive vision I see worlds, / Full of the changing play
of rainbow hues." In keeping with such fantasy, Prokofiev varies colour and mood with
chameleon-like rapidity, and Pittoresco Ridicolosamente and Lento irrealmente are
among his more idiosyncratic headings. Nos. 14-16 are Feroce, Inquieto and Dolente,
and all three suggest the way a violent and malignant quality is never far below the
surface where Russian fairy-tales or fugitive visions are concerned.