Visions fugitives

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Sergei Prokofiev

Sergei Prokofiev (arr. Missal)

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This work bears the designation Opus 22.

General Info

Year: 1915-17 / 2017
Difficulty: V (see Ratings for explanation)
Original Medium: Piano
Publisher: Manuscript
Cost: Score and Parts - Rental ($250.00)
Contact Jason Missal


1. Plaintive
2. Impish, sardonic
3. Silly
4. Animato agitato
5. Molto giocoso
6. Con eleganza
7. "Arpa" Pittoresco
8. Comodo
9. Allegretto tranquillo
10. Ridicolosamente
11. Con vivacita
12. Lithe waltz tempo, with a hint of menace
13. Misterioso
14. Feroce
15. Inquieto
16. Dolente
17. Poetico
18. Con una dolce lentezza, eerie
19. Presto agitatissimo e molto accentuato
20. Suspended, otherworldly


Full Score
C Piccolo
Flute I-II
Oboe I-II
English Horn
Bassoon I-II
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II-III
B-flat Bass Clarinet
E-flat Alto Saxophone
C Trumpet I-II
Horn in F I-II
Trombone I-II
Bass Trombone
String Bass
Percussion I-II-III, including:

  • Bass Drum
  • Crash Cymbals
  • Glockenspiel
  • Marimba
  • Snare Drum
  • Tambourine
  • Triangle
  • Vibraphone
  • Xylophone


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

Like many of the great composers, Sergei Prokofiev had a precocious talent. He was composing before he was six, he had produced an opera by twelve, and for his application to the St. Petersburg Conservatory, at thirteen, he submitted four operas, two sonatas, a symphony and several piano works. During his teens he studied with such luminaries as Glière, Rimsky-Korsakov, Lyadov and Tcherepnin.

The Visions fugitives date from the years 1915-1917. These twenty miniatures (average length about a minute) take their cue from Schumann’s Carnaval and Chopin’s op. 28 Preludes, their title and inspiration from these lines by the Russian Symbolist poet Konstantin Balmont: “In every fugitive vision I see worlds, / Full of the changing play of rainbows.” While overall the expressive range is oriented more toward the restrained end of the emotional spectrum, they nevertheless serve as a workshop for a great variety of colorful, experimental epigrams. Moods range from the lyrical to the whimsical, from the spirited to the serene, from the sedate to the seductive.

- Program Note by Jason Missal

Visions fugitives, Op. 22, are a series of short piano pieces composed by Russian composer Sergei Prokofiev (1891–1953) between 1915 and 1917. They were premiered by Prokofiev on April 15, 1918, in Petrograd, Soviet Union. They were written individually, many for specific friends of Prokofiev's, and he originally referred to them as his "doggies" because of their "bite". In August 1917, Prokofiev played them for Russian poet Konstantin Balmont, and others, at the home of a mutual friend. Balmont was inspired to compose a sonnet on the spot, called "a magnificent improvisation" by Prokofiev who named the pieces Mimolyotnosti from these lines in Balmont's poem: "In every fleeting vision I see worlds, Filled with the fickle play of rainbows". A French-speaking friend at the house, Kira Nikolayevna, immediately provided a French translation for the pieces: Visions Fugitives. Prokofiev often performed only a couple of them at a time as encores at the end of his performances.

The pieces contain dissonant harmonies, similar in nature to music composed by Prokofiev's contemporaries Schoenberg and Scriabin, although still retaining highly original concepts in both tonality and rhythm. The pieces are whimsical musical vignettes and, although dissonant, are pleasant, effervescent, and bright, as if Prokofiev wished to show a slower, more joyous side of his imaginative personality. The overall effect is in the impressionist style, not unlike a work of Debussy; in fact, many of the movements are similar in style and sound.

Because the movements are so short individually (lasting around one or two minutes), most performances include a group of movements.

- Program Note from Wikipedia

This transcription was prepared for small wind ensemble by Jason Missal is partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree Doctor of Musical Arts, University of Texas, April 4, 2017.


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State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

  • Oklahoma State University (Stillwater) Wind Ensemble (Joseph P. Missal, conductor) - 12 April 2018
  • Indiana University (Bloomington) Wind Ensemble (Stephen W. Pratt, conductor) – 7 November 2017
  • University of Louisiana at Lafayette Wind Ensemble (Jason Missal, conductor) - 25 October 2017
  • University of Texas (Austin) Wind Ensemble (Jason Missal, conductor) – 19 February 2017 *Premiere Performance*

Works for Winds by This Composer