Sergei Prokofiev: Prelude Op. 12, No. 7 “The Harp”

Sergei Prokofiev

Sergei Prokofiev

Sergei Prokofiev composed his Ten Pieces for Piano, Op. 12 during the years 1906 – 1913, while a student at the Saint Petersburg Conservatory.  Prokofiev himself gave the premiere of this work in Moscow in 1914.

“The Harp” Prelude is the seventh piece from this group, and exists in two versions, one for piano and one for harp.  Here, in another clip from his 1978 recital at the Great Hall of the Moscow Conservatory, is the great Emil Gilels performing the piano version.

I thought it was both interesting and fun to compare the two arrangements, and so here, performing the transcription for harp, is Anna Verkholantseva at the Royal Palace in Gödöllö, Hungary in October 2006.

And finally, a surprise.  Performing the same piece one more time is one of my newest and happiest YouTube discoveries.  This young woman is Szuyu Su.  We learn from her YouTube page that she is from Tainan City, Taiwan, Republic of China, and was born in 1998.  Her English name is Rachel, and this video was made when Rachel was eight years old.


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3 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Hello Derrick,
    I usually see this prelude titled as “Harp”, and I have been trying to find some sources indicating the authenticity of this name. I am not sure whether Prokofiev intended to write this prelude for harps by himself or the harp arrangement is from someone else. Do you mind sharing with me where you found the information please?
    Thank you:)

    • Hello Jane,

      The copies of the score that I have seen simply show the title “Prelude” for this piece. Prokofiev wrote it originally for piano, as one of his “10 Pieces for Piano, Op. 12”, and he also wrote the transcription for harp. It may have acquired the title, “Harp” or “The Harp” just from the way people usually referred to it.

      Here is a link to some additional information about this prelude:


      • Thank you!! Have a lovely Easter:)

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