Vladimir Mikhailovich Deshevov (1889–1955) was one of prominent figures working within the field of Russian music in the first part of the 20th century. Along with other modernists he pioneered in developing new themes and genres in the 1920s and 30s. Among his works are the revolutionary ballet The Red Whirlwind (1924, based on the poem The Twelve by Alexander Blok), the opera Ice and Steel (1930), devoted to the Kronstadt rebellion of 1921, “industrial” incidental music to the staging Rails (1926), music to the silent six-series film The Fragment of the Empire (1929), music to the first sounded childrens’ cartoon Post (1930, after Samuil Marshak). Together with N. Dvorikov Deshevov created the first Soviet operetta Druzhnaya Gorka (1929).
His works has been received with great enthusiasm both in Russia and abroad. After being first encountered with Deshevov’s works in 1926, the famous composer Darius Milhaud declared: “In Leningrad, I was mostly impressed by the young Deshevov. He is a real talent absolutely alien to academic approach to music.”
His innovative compositions have not lost their significance even now. For example, his opera Ice and Steel was staged in the Zurich Opera in 2008. It was also featured on the radio.
Deshevov’s piano compositions form a very significant part of his output. They attracted attention because of their striking theatricality and choreographical plasticity. They are concentrated emotionally and exhibit an exceptional flair for piano tone colour, as well as well-done texture. Their content is of a wide range extending from dramatical emotions, pictures of nature and fairy tales to the grotesque and sarcasm. In expressing these moods, his music uses elements of the Baroque, romantic, impressionistic and expressionistic styles.
The present edition is intended to enrich the repertoire of concert pianists. At the same time it will be of great interest for students of musical high schools and colleges.
Sonata No. 2. Ор. 5 (1921)
Scherzo. Ор. 6 (1922/1954). Second version
Ballade. Ор. 7 (1923)
The Factory. A fragment from the opera Ice and Steel. Op. 24 (1930). Free arrangement by A. Kamensky