It remains one of the most technically formidable piano concertos in the standard repertoire. The first and last movements are each around twelve minutes long and constitute some of the most dramatic music in all of Prokofiev's piano concertos.
Both 1st and 4th movements contain long and developed cadenzas with the first movement's cadenza alone taking up almost the entire last half of the movement.
The concerto consists of four movements lasting some 29 to 37 minutes:
1. Andantino-Allegretto (10–14 minutes)
2. Scherzo: Vivace (2–3 minutes)
3. Intermezzo: Allegro moderato (5–9 minutes)
4. Finale: Allegro tempestoso (10–13 minutes)