Elena Firsova, the Leningrad-born, Moscow-trained composer, emerged in the 1970s as one of the most distinctive and imaginative Russian voices of her generation * Her music reflects the influence of her mentor Denisov but transforms his expansive lyricism into something more personal, private and romantic * Often sets the intimate and confessional poetry of Mandelstam, one of the greatest modern Russian poets, who died in the Stalinist camps in 1938 * Her orchestral works and concertos incline to delicate chamber-music textures and singing melodic lines * Since the early 1990s Firsova has lived in the UK
Works by Elena Firsova include:
Earthly Life (1984) Cantata for soprano and chamber ensemble
Secret Way (1992) for voice and orchestra
Cassandra (1992) for symphony orchestra
Works by Firsova are represented by Boosey & Hawkes/Sikorski for the United Kingdom, the British Commonwealth (excluding Canada), the Republic of Ireland, Germany, Switzerland, Denmark, Iceland, Norway, Sweden, the Netherlands, Spain, Portugal, Greece, Turkey and Israel
Looking Ahead: new Piano Concerto for Yefim Bronfman premiered by the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra in Amsterdam under Jakub Hrusa (16 Jun); 75th birthday in 2025.
"The genre of the solo cantata is probably the most important for me. I have written cantatas on poems by Osip Mandelstam at regular intervals all my life, and every time it gives me a very strong creative impulse which even acts upon the next few compositions." — Elena Firsova