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Arts Desk
Every week, WRTI features a different album on the air. Learn more about them here.

Classical Album of the Week: Visions of Prokofiev with Lisa Batiashvili and Yannick Nézet-Séguin

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March 19, 2018. As if Yannick Nézet-Séguin weren’t busy enough with The Philadelphia Orchestra, the Met Opera, his Orchestre Métropolitain, and the Rotterdam Philharmonic! He’s also been recording regularly with the Chamber Orchestra of Europe. Yannick’s latest venture with that group is Visions of Prokofiev, featuring superstar violinist Lisa Batiashvili.

The album features Sergei Prokofiev’s two violin concertos. There are also movements from his famous ballets Cinderella, Romeo and Juliet, and The Love for Three Oranges arranged for solo violin and orchestra by Lisa’s father, Tamás Batiashvili.

In Soviet-era Georgia, Prokofiev was considered one of the foremost composers of the 20th century. Along with being widely performed throughout the country, his music was a staple of Georgia’s educational curriculum and therefore formed part of the Georgian-born Batiashvili’s earliest musical memories. Following her move to Germany at age 12, the violinist said it was Prokofiev’s music that shaped her as an artist.

Batiashvili has worked with Yannick on several occasions, including in 2016 when she played Shostakovich with The Philadelphia Orchestra. She calls performing with the Canadian-born conductor one of her most memorable musical experiences, comparing it (believe it or not) to a Michael Jackson concert she attended in 1997.