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Beach's Variations on Balkan Themes, op. 60 is an amazing piece. There are a lot of terrible recordings out there though on this piece. Unfortunately, one of the best is just the shortened version created after Beach and her publisher forgot to renew their copyright after the new law was passed in 1927(?) The full version is amazing - and it's a doozie to play. But it's fantastic!
 
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When it comes to piano music, I tend to fixate on the big-name composers more than with other genres, especially Beethoven. If I had to spend the rest of my life playing and listening to just one genre by just one composer, I think I'd stand the best chance of not going crazy if I had Beethoven's piano sonatas. Right now I'm in love with Das Lebewohl (Op. 81a) because I'm playing and analyzing it, but I really couldn't pick a favorite.
 

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Right now, its Balakirev's Mazurka 6. You'll be hearing from me when my friend posts up his video of it on youtube. Balakirev has some really top notch pieces.

Chabrier Pieces Pittoresque is at the top of my list.

I also love the Brahms Opus 10 Ballades

Right now, I'm not especially focused on piano music though.
 

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Absolutely adore the three last Schubert Piano Sonatas, with D. 958 probably being my overall favourite, with D. 959 having my favourite individual moments.

Obviously, I love everything by Brahms, so I can't really single anything out, but I think my all-time favourite ever piece of piano music is, strangely enough, the Variations and Fugue on a Theme by Handel. Me looooves myself some variations! :D
 

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When it comes to playing it, Debussy. Nothing else in the entire repertoire really compares to the pluck of your heartstrings, the pure bliss when you let your fingers sink into some of his gorgeous chords.

 
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When it comes to playing it, Debussy. Nothing else in the entire repertoire really compares to the pluck of your heartstrings, the pure bliss when you let your fingers sink into some of his gorgeous chords.

Ahhh, how sweet...I created shows at the Miami Space Transit Planetarium for almost ten years and this piece is deeply embedded in my mind...used it as background to many shows, not to mention all the times I heard it at the beginning of Stargazer
 

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Right now? I'll give a current top 10 or so, although this changes with regularity. (in fact I might update it every couple of weeks).

1. Liszt Piano Sonata
2. Beethoven Piano Sonata op 57 'Appassionata.'
3. Liszt/Busoni Fantasy and Fugue on 'Ad Nos, Salutarem Undam.'
4. Liszt Ballade No. 2
5. Chopin Ballade No. 4
6. Liszt Aux cyprès de la Villa d'Este (Both)
7. Liszt Pensees des Morts
8. Liszt Tarentella (Venezia e Napoli)
9. Beethoven Sonata Op 27 no. 2 'Moonlight' (Forgive me, after ages of neglect because of how overplayed that first movement is...The first movement is what it is, and the finale is so violent and remarkable, especially when you put it in context with when it was written).
10. Schubert Impromptu Op 90 no. 4

Lol a steady diet of romanticism, and Liszt especially, but that's how I roll :D
 

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I recently listen to a Chinese composer's piano music and I like it very much. Through he is not famous and most of us don't know him. I like the pieces of Piano Music of Night. The music clams me down and makes me tranquil and peaceful. There are 31 pieces in the Piano Music of Night. Guys, enjoy them.

 

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I responded earlier in this thread, but I will go into more depth here.

I love most kinds of classical music, but being a pianist solo piano music is my favourite. Classical and Baroque era 'piano' music I don't listen to often and, past small doses, I find tedious and boring. I love 20th century music to an extent, especially impressionism from Debussy and Ravel (and Liszt), and Prokofiev has his place too. But anything that gets too atonal and extremely...random I have never been able to get into.

Romantic era piano music is the piano music I listen to by far the most. I consider Chopin, Schumann and Liszt the 'big three' of the Romantic era as far as piano music goes. I wouldn't objectively rate one above the other, and of course it saddens me that Liszt often gets the raw end there compared to the other two names. I also LOVE Beethoven and probably consider him the greatest piano composer ever, but I don't really consider him romantic or classical.

As you all know, Liszt is my favourite piano composer. Where Chopin and Schubert have the most openly beautiful (and often extremely poignant) piano music , and Schumann has sheer romanticism, Liszt has it all. To me his piano music has a transcendental nature to it that the aforementioned composers can't match (except late Beethoven). His output is the most varied, from works anticipating impressionism, to first rate light hearted showpieces, to some of the most moving romantic statements, to some of the darkest, most profound piano music, he has it all (sometimes all in one piece!).

I consider the very best piano music he wrote to be...

Piano Sonata in B minor.
Fantasy and Fugue on the chorale Ad nos, ad salutarem undam (Transc Busoni).
Variations on a theme from Weinen, Klagen, Sorgen, Zagen.
Réminiscences de Norma.
Années de pèlerinage.
Harmonies poétiques et religieuses.
Douze études d'exécution transcendante.
Trois études de concert.
Deux légendes.
Two Ballades.

And past that he wrote a seemingly endless amount of great piano music, that I simply love.

While I love pretty much everything Debussy and Chopin wrote, late Beethoven and the 'named' sonatas, a great deal of Schumann, Prokofiev, Schubert, Brahms, and many more...No one moves me like Liszt does.
 

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I'm also a huge fan of (what I know of) Liszt !
My feelings about the Sonata in b minor are the same as Stephen Hough's, from this interview :

The Liszt Sonata is probably the greatest single piano work of the Romantic era - it is a symphony for the piano containing the world. It's a piece of enormous emotional depth and a great, broad human spirit. I never fail to find it moving.
There's so much audacity in this work. Incredible harmonies, unique form, beautiful themes - all derived from the same motive ! -, the wide spectrum of human emotions, contrapuntal writing (not so common at this period), literary qualities (Aimard - yes, I like him a lot - described the first theme as "Faustian". For me the whole sonata definitely recreate this world, this ambiance.).

I hope I'll be able to play it someday - since I also plan on studying piano and organ. It's a monument, an incredibly deep work. I loved to see Aimard playing it in Besançon's festival of music last september.

What I find amazing about Liszt - and what contradicts HUGELY all those people who say that Liszt was only able to write bombastic virtuoso salon music - is that he foreseen impressionism as well as atonality.
For instance his Légende n°1 "La prédication aux oiseaux de St François d'Assises" is amazing (Aimard also played it when I saw him :3) and sounds impressionist. The same goes with his Jeux d'eau à la Villa d'Este, and surely many other pieces.
He was truly a radical avant-garde figure in his lifetime - I also read he was very supporting to new composers, for instance Fauré, Grieg I think, etc.
He had guts.
 

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I'm also a huge fan of (what I know of) Liszt !
My feelings about the Sonata in b minor are the same as Stephen Hough's, from this interview :

There's so much audacity in this work. Incredible harmonies, unique form, beautiful themes - all derived from the same motive ! -, the wide spectrum of human emotions, contrapuntal writing (not so common at this period), literary qualities (Aimard - yes, I like him a lot - described the first theme as "Faustian". For me the whole sonata definitely recreate this world, this ambiance.).

I hope I'll be able to play it someday - since I also plan on studying piano and organ. It's a monument, an incredibly deep work. I loved to see Aimard playing it in Besançon's festival of music last september.

What I find amazing about Liszt - and what contradicts HUGELY all those people who say that Liszt was only able to write bombastic virtuoso salon music - is that he foreseen impressionism as well as atonality.
For instance his Légende n°1 "La prédication aux oiseaux de St François d'Assises" is amazing (Aimard also played it when I saw him :3) and sounds impressionist. The same goes with his Jeux d'eau à la Villa d'Este, and surely many other pieces.
He was truly a radical avant-garde figure in his lifetime - I also read he was very supporting to new composers, for instance Fauré, Grieg I think, etc.
He had guts.
Great post!

And I really agree re the Sonata. It was one of the first pieces I saw live, and it truly was a life changing experience - never in concert have I had an equal one to that first time hearing the Sonata live. It is my favourite piano piece, bar none. However some authorities do consider Faustian influence to be a myth, it certainly is a possibility though! But I consider it to be his greatest work - the Faust Symphony is a monumental masterpiece, and the Christus Oratorio is to me one of the greatest works of the 19th century - but the Sonata is simply transcendental. I also had the oppurtunity of seeing Hough play it live last year - a night I won't soon forget!

And you are right. His first Legende and Les jeux d'eaux are two of my favourites. What's even more amazing is that he was experimenting with impressionism as early as the 1830s, in the Album d'un Voyageur and also the first Apparition (not to the same level of mastery, but still). Some of his early works show remarkable originality - listen to his Malediction, and De Profundis - both written in the thirties, when Liszt was 22-23! And that originality continued throughout his life. Mark Andre Hamelin (who was the performer I first saw play the Sonata live) is quoted as saying that Liszt is perhaps THE most original composer who ever lived.

He was a radical figure, for sure. Never content with the same forms, with conservative musical thought. He pushed the boundaries of music in many ways and even if the finished product isn't always satisfying or as good as where his innovations would lead in the late 19th and 20th century (although it sometimes is), there's no denying his influence.
 

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PRAELUDIUM.
Have a look at the thread : Liszt Is the Most Underrated Composer on TC. You will find it interesting.
 
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