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Joined: Jul 2009
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And it is impossible for me to make a ranking list of favorite composers. Neither do I have favorite pieces in any category. Not because I don't like music, but simply because there is so much good music out there. Occasionally I see statements like "don't like baroque", "can't stand Mozart" or similar. But I think that we are very lucky having the whole music history as our playground. And as performing musicians at any level we have an unique opportunity to get "inside" the music.

Sometimes when playing Bach I think that this is the greatest music ever written. Then I turn to a late romantic like Faure and get equally amazed by the beauty of his music. Lately I have "discovered" several composers new to me, for instance Scriabin and Granados, and every time I have a feeling of entering a new world of expression. And then there are many great pieces composed by more "obscure" and perhaps almost forgotten composers.

All this said, I admit that I needed some time to learn appreciating some of the great composers. To begin with I wasn't very interested in Bach. And I had even greater problems with the music of Mozart and Haydn. The first time I heard Debussy I thought it was weird, and later composers like Shostakovich or Bartok sounded like just noise. But not any more. Of course, when encountering new music it may be challenging in the beginning to "get the message", and it may be necessary to listen to the piece (or play through the score) several times. But I think it is worth while to spend the effort doing this.

Chopin and Beethoven were very great composers, and they wrote lots of music for the piano. I highly value their music, but there are other composers out there who also are worth playing and listening to.

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I don't see Brahms in your list smile He's long been my favorite, though I'm fickle. Lately I've been on a Rachmaninoff kick. I'd be quite happy to naver play (or hear) another Mozart sonata, but I don't mind the concertos.


Peter
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currently working on Brahms op. 10 Ballades, f-minor sonata and 2nd concerto
Mendelssohn Songs Without Words and E minor Prelude and Fugue
whatever strikes my fancy today.
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You are right, there are many wonderful composers and pieces out there..... with the Internet, I feel like a kid in a candy store and want to play much of the music that I hear. I think my someday list is over 200 now, but I add to it every week. More than enough for several lifetimes.

Those threads where someone asks, 'what should I play next (and they are not asking for help in narrowing down their options) are always amazing to me, because I have so much I want to do. My question to myself is always "Am my good enough to play this yet?" 🙄 And even among the choices that I am able to play, I want to do it all right now which is impossible

The problem is, not being a young pup, I don't think I can play every composer well so I'm trying to limit myself to a few that I do decently rather than scattering my focus among many and do them all poorly. So it will always be ' Chopin.... and a few friends' even if some of this friends are more than 100 years younger than he.

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Hi there,

Robert Schumann (Davids Blundertanz and Fantasy Stück) and Franz Schubert (Stenchen Serenade) come to mind.


Robert Schumann: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T2m_eqBQ10k

Robert Schumann: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ce7oB3tvenk

Franz Schubert: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=arqouwfIKzU

Best wishes to you / Steve
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Originally Posted by P3T3R
I don't see Brahms in your list smile .


I didn't actually attempt to give a list of potential favorite composers. My point is that I value diversity and find unique qualities in music written by many different composers and musical eras. Brahms is no exception. I love his chamber music and symphonies, and I'd love to play some of his piano pieces if I had the needed skills. And "Ein Deutches Requiem" is awesome.

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Originally Posted by Lakeviewsteve
Hi there,

Robert Schumann (Davids Blundertanz and Fantasy Stück) and Franz Schubert (Stenchen Serenade) come to mind.


Robert Schumann: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T2m_eqBQ10k

Robert Schumann: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ce7oB3tvenk

Franz Schubert: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=arqouwfIKzU

Best wishes to you / Steve
Bösendorfer 170



I value the music of both Schubert and Schumann. I haven't played much of their piano music, though. Schubert wrote a number of great sonatas, the most beautiful ones being so long that I don't have a chance to learn them with the limited practice time I have. And my hands seem to be incompatible with Schumann's piano pieces. But I have accompanied vocal soloists in performances of both Schubert and Schumann songs. And I consider both as masters of the "Lied" along with composers like Grieg and Fauré.

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Originally Posted by dogperson

The problem is, not being a young pup, I don't think I can play every composer well so I'm trying to limit myself to a few that I do decently rather than scattering my focus among many and do them all poorly. So it will always be ' Chopin.... and a few friends' even if some of this friends are more than 100 years younger than he.


Being disciplined and limiting myself is a problem for me. When comes to practicing and performance it is a good point to stick to a limited number of composers. After having studied a few of Grieg's lyric pieces it is easier to learn more Grieg than music written by other composers using different means of expression. So although I could say that almost all great composers are favorites of mine, there are a few I play much more than others. My "short" list includes:
- Bach
- Haydn
- Mendelssohn
- Grieg
- Chopin
- Faure

The reason for this is that I have gained sufficient understanding of their music to be able to work with it on my own. And with the exception of Faure, these composers have written lots of relatively short pieces that are playable, even by an amateur. I have spent some time with barcarolles and nocturnes of Faure - pretty hard for me - and now I'm working on some of his songs (Chansons) together with a vocalist, and these count as "short" and "relatively easy" for me.

I have omitted important names like Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, Schumann, Debussy etc from my short list, simply because I don't play so much of their music. I should also mention that among composers that I could count among my "favorites" are Verdi, Schönberg, Schostakovich, Prokoffieff, Rachmaninoff, Mahler and many more. It is just impossible for me to say whose music I value the most. I need them all.

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Originally Posted by P3T3R
... I'd be quite happy to naver play (or hear) another Mozart sonata, but I don't mind the concertos.

Seems like you have an unfavourite composer?


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