Peter & the Wolf (in Russian: Петя и волк, Petya i volk) by Sergei Prokofiev
My Booksellers Breakfast is Russian themed today with blinis; some topped with creme fraiche and fake caviar and others with smoked salmon and dill or harissa paste and roast tomatoes and thyme. I don’t have a samovar so I just made do with a cup of strong hot tea.
The books are two Oxford World Classics – War and Peace and a Dostoevsky. In the background are a small stack of Turgenev, the first Russian writer I lost my heart to – On the Eve is a near perfect book. I have also included a Chekhov translated by Christopher Hampton and a lovely wrappered Russian Folk Tales.
The star of the piece is Prokofiev’s Peter & the Wolf. My earliest memory is recreating the scenes from this with my mother and father with the music in the background I liked playing Peter or the little bird and would climb up my father while my mother prowled below making wolf noises.
The music was an important part of my childhood and as my mother died when I was six it was a wonderful way for me to remember her.
Later at the end of Primary School we did a production of this piece and as I was a fairly solid child I was cast as the duck. Not best pleased with the casting I still worked hard on the costume and the quacking and I think the audience was pleased when it was discovered I had been swallowed alive.
If you haven’t heard Peter & the Wolf listen soon, choose a narrator you like. Your children will also be entranced.