9 May
Studio Theatre
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One of the most adaptable chamber groups in the country

The Guardian on Friendship

PROKOFIEV Flute Sonata in D Op.94
BRITTEN Cello Suite No.3 Op.87
TOM OWEN Paraphrases New commission for May Festival 2017
SHOSTAKOVICH Piano Quintet in G Op.57

Benjamin Britten’s profound third Cello Suite represents the musical pinnacle of the composer’s enduring friendship with the great Russian cellist Mstislav Rostropovich. Britten’s contact with Rostropovich and Shostakovich was one of the few channels for artistic interaction that remained open between East and West through the most difficult years of the Cold War.

Shostakovich’s wonderfully varied Piano Quintet displays very openly the influence of J.S. Bach. Official Soviet approval came in the form of the award of a Stalin Prize (1st Class).


Music in the Round has commissioned the members of Sheffield’s professional composers collective, Platform 4 to each write a new work for this 2017 Festival, inspired by famous Russian repertoire. You can hear the new pieces performed alongside the works that inspired them in each programme.  Before and during the Festival, online and in person, the composers will be explaining and illustrating how they’re creating new music from great works. Find out more at

Experience thrilling live music by the world’s greatest Russian composers, performed up close in the Crucible Studio this May. See the full festival diary here.

Don’t know where to start? Listen to the festival highlights playlist or come along to a Russia in the Round ‘taster’ concert on 11 March.

Running time: About 1 hour and 45 minutes (including a 15 minute interval)
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Sheffield Theatres is the largest producing theatre complex outside London. Across our three auditoria: the Crucible, the Lyceum and the Crucible Studio, we offer a huge variety of home-grown and touring productions, as well as a thriving programme of participatory events and activities.