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#1980661 - 10/30/12 06:41 PM Re: 'Most neglected' great piano composer on Pianist Corner? [Re: Mark_C]
wr Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 7790
Off the top of my head, here's a list of composers who have written some fine piano music who rarely get mentioned here, if ever, and if they do, it's in a list such as this:

Kenneth Leighton
Harold Shapero
Boris Blacher
Douglas Lilburn
Boris Tishchencko
Roger Sessions
Vincent Persichetti
Ernst Toch
Johann Nepomuk Hummel
Ignaz Moscheles
Ignaz Freidman
Ernest Krenek
Max Reger
Vincent d'Indy
Jean Françaix
André Jolivet
Arthur Honegger
Paul Hindemith
Frank Martin
Boris Tchaikovsky
Mozart Camargo Guarnieri (his dad named all the kids after a composer he loved!)
Joaquin Nin-Culmell
Igor Markevitch
Bedřich Smetana
Sigrid Karg-Elert
Nikolai Myaskovsky
Grażyna Bacewicz
Rodion Shchedrin
Charles Koechlin
Valentin Silvestrov

...and there's a great number more who don't come to mind right now. Even relatively well-known composers of piano music like Poulenc hardly ever come up for discussion here.

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#1980672 - 10/30/12 07:12 PM Re: 'Most neglected' great piano composer on Pianist Corner? [Re: Mark_C]
Cheeto717 Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/06/07
Posts: 696
Loc: Pennsylvania
I feel like Prokofiev doesn't come up as often as he should. I'll also second Granados...a great favorite of mine.
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Working On:
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#1980687 - 10/30/12 07:59 PM Re: 'Most neglected' great piano composer on Pianist Corner? [Re: Mark_C]
BDB Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/03
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I think one may be here:

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#1980702 - 10/30/12 08:50 PM Re: 'Most neglected' great piano composer on Pianist Corner? [Re: Mark_C]
Plowboy Offline
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Registered: 06/26/08
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Ligeti
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#1980757 - 10/30/12 11:20 PM Re: 'Most neglected' great piano composer on Pianist Corner? [Re: wr]
JoelW Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/12
Posts: 4763
Loc: USA
Originally Posted By: wr

[...]

Boris Tchaikovsky

[...]


What an unfortunate last name.

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#1980806 - 10/31/12 04:16 AM Re: 'Most neglected' great piano composer on Pianist Corner? [Re: Cheeto717]
wr Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 7790
Originally Posted By: Cheeto717
I feel like Prokofiev doesn't come up as often as he should.


And, considering how many versions there are of some of his works, it is surprising there are some others that are hardly represented at all. I've been working on a cool piece of his called "Paysage" (or "Landscape"), from his op. 59. My edition has a typo in the metronome marking, so I thought I would check on YouTube to see what tempo others were taking for it. And I was amazed that I could only find one single performance of it. Fortunately for my needs, it was from a recognized and expert Prokofiev pianist - Richter.

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#1980807 - 10/31/12 04:32 AM Re: 'Most neglected' great piano composer on Pianist Corner? [Re: wr]
pianojosh23 Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/11/08
Posts: 604
Originally Posted By: wr
Originally Posted By: Cheeto717
I feel like Prokofiev doesn't come up as often as he should.


And, considering how many versions there are of some of his works, it is surprising there are some others that are hardly represented at all.


You could say the same about Liszt. So many terrific works that are hardly mentioned.

As for the OP, I think Amy Beach deserves a mention.


Edited by pianojosh23 (10/31/12 04:36 AM)

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#1980865 - 10/31/12 09:44 AM Re: 'Most neglected' great piano composer on Pianist Corner? [Re: Mark_C]
Ridicolosamente Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/08/08
Posts: 1467
Loc: Miami, Florida, USA
I wonder if Mark was facetious in throwing in "great" in the title. Such a title would assume that we can only pick from the accepted 15 or 20 "greats".

Otherwise it obviously turns into either 1) who's your favorite composer of the moment that's not Bach/Chopin/Rachmaninoff... or 2) who do you wish you heard a lot more regularly on Sirius/XM or your local classical station, even though they didn't create 25 Variations on a theme by Handel, or a suite inspired by Iberia or something... smile


I'll nominate Carl Vine. Besides everyone jumping at the chance to recommend a new listener to his Piano Sonata No 1, does anyone ever actually say anything about the work itself? If only Kreisler could post more frequently.... If his music is recommended so frequently, shouldn't people talk about his music more?

3rd sonata anyone? Ok ok fine, there was this, but years later. I was disappointed there wasn't at least feigned interest in his recent concerto premiere.

*crickets* *crickets*


-Daniel
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#1980870 - 10/31/12 10:00 AM Re: 'Most neglected' great piano composer on Pianist Corner? [Re: DanS]
apple* Offline


Registered: 01/01/03
Posts: 19862
Loc: Kansas
Originally Posted By: DanS
Originally Posted By: Mark_C
Originally Posted By: DanS
I can't say who's neglected here, since I just joined yesterday....

Yesterday??
I swear, it seems like you're a veteran already. smile


Thanks! I do love to hear myself type blush

that waas a super cute response. Welcome to the forum DanS!
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#1980877 - 10/31/12 10:11 AM Re: 'Most neglected' great piano composer on Pianist Corner? [Re: wr]
Ridicolosamente Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/08/08
Posts: 1467
Loc: Miami, Florida, USA
wr, I only know choice works by some of the composers on your list because of invaluable YT contributors like John11 and especially fyrexianoff (I forget now, but I believe he is reincarnated SWMD.)

I haven't even heard of some of them. Any specific recommendations for the ones listed?:
Originally Posted By: wr
Off the top of my head, here's a list of composers who have written some fine piano music who rarely get mentioned here...
Kenneth Leighton
Harold Shapero
Roger Sessions
Ernest Krenek
Arthur Honegger
Igor Markevitch
Sigrid Karg-Elert
Charles Koechlin
...


Originally Posted By: wr
...Even relatively well-known composers of piano music like Poulenc hardly ever come up for discussion here.
I admit I only know Poulenc's two-piano concerto, but I don't understand why I hear it all the time. I don't think it's a great work at all... I cringe from that opening crash and piano flourish. The simple-hommage-to-Classical-wait-no-just-boring Larghetto.. The 3rd movement is the highlight and somewhat catchy and bouncy, but overall, the piece is hardly worth the frequency of performance and airtime that I come across. I don't even own a recording of it and I hear it all the time...

What else by Poulenc is worthwhile?

-Daniel
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Currently working on:
-Dane Rudhyar's Stars from Pentagrams No 3

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#1980882 - 10/31/12 10:25 AM Re: 'Most neglected' great piano composer on Pianist Corner? [Re: Mark_C]
Cheeto717 Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/06/07
Posts: 696
Loc: Pennsylvania
I performed the Poulenc sonata for 4 hands. definitely a fun high-energy piece full of funny and quirky moments, but I wouldn't define it as "great". It's also pretty simple in its technical demands if i remember correctly.
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Working On:
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#1980917 - 10/31/12 12:38 PM Re: 'Most neglected' great piano composer on Pianist Corner? [Re: Ridicolosamente]
bennevis Online   content
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/14/10
Posts: 5008
Originally Posted By: Ridicolosamente
What else by Poulenc is worthwhile?

-Daniel


Plenty, if you get away from the piano.

His favorite instruments were the voice and woodwind. His Flute Sonata is lovely and so are his songs. And his Concert champêtre (Harpsichord Concerto) and Concerto for organ, strings and timpani are rather more interesting than his Piano Concertos. And his opera Dialogues des carmélites is amazing, complete with guillotine effects as the heads get chopped off one by one.....

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#1980920 - 10/31/12 12:54 PM Re: 'Most neglected' great piano composer on Pianist Corner? [Re: bennevis]
argerichfan Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/15/06
Posts: 8848
Loc: Pacific Northwest, US.
Originally Posted By: bennevis
Concerto for organ, strings and timpani...

That is an incredible piece. I once heard it live at Liverpool Cathedral... almost apocalyptic!

Another Poulenc must-hear would be the Gloria for chorus and orchestra. The choral writing is very clever (and expert), the orchestration positively delectable.
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#1980946 - 10/31/12 01:48 PM Re: 'Most neglected' great piano composer on Pianist Corner? [Re: Mark_C]
Damon Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/22/06
Posts: 6114
Loc: St. Louis area
Franz Liszt
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#1980951 - 10/31/12 01:54 PM Re: 'Most neglected' great piano composer on Pianist Corner? [Re: Damon]
JoelW Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/12
Posts: 4763
Loc: USA
Originally Posted By: Damon
Franz Liszt


+1

Someone should make an appreciation thread about him.

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#1981008 - 10/31/12 05:06 PM Re: 'Most neglected' great piano composer on Pianist Corner? [Re: Ridicolosamente]
Mark_C Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/11/09
Posts: 19712
Loc: New York
Originally Posted By: Ridicolosamente
I wonder if Mark was facetious in throwing in "great" in the title. Such a title would assume that we can only pick from the accepted 15 or 20 "greats"....

Wasn't facetious at all, including because IMO in all such things there's plenty of room for debate on who is 'great' and how many there are, plus just what it means. I realize that many people would dispute calling Joplin great, and also (as Plover noted) that many people don't consider him "classical."

I could see some people feeling that there are only 3 or 4 or 5 "great" piano composers, and others feeling there are 20.....or 50.

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#1981124 - 10/31/12 09:03 PM Re: 'Most neglected' great piano composer on Pianist Corner? [Re: Mark_C]
DanS Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/28/12
Posts: 554
How about Mendelssohn?

I hardly ever hear any mention of Mendelssohn anywhere other than his Songs Without Words.
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"Most pianists are poor musicians, they dissect music into bits-and-pieces, like a roast chicken" -Debussy

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#1981233 - 11/01/12 06:44 AM Re: 'Most neglected' great piano composer on Pianist Corner? [Re: Mark_C]
Francisco Scalco Online   content
Full Member

Registered: 09/15/12
Posts: 289
Villa Lobos. I never head his name in this forum, only in this thread. Really people, listen to his lyrical pieces, the Bachianas, "valsa sentimental", "lenda do caboclo"... Or if you're feeling adventurous the "Rudepoema". Masterpieces....

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#1981283 - 11/01/12 09:47 AM Re: 'Most neglected' great piano composer on Pianist Corner? [Re: Ridicolosamente]
wr Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 7790
Originally Posted By: Ridicolosamente
wr, I only know choice works by some of the composers on your list because of invaluable YT contributors like John11 and especially fyrexianoff (I forget now, but I believe he is reincarnated SWMD.)

I haven't even heard of some of them. Any specific recommendations for the ones listed?:
Originally Posted By: wr
Off the top of my head, here's a list of composers who have written some fine piano music who rarely get mentioned here...
Kenneth Leighton
Harold Shapero
Roger Sessions
Ernest Krenek
Arthur Honegger
Igor Markevitch
Sigrid Karg-Elert
Charles Koechlin
...


Originally Posted By: wr
...Even relatively well-known composers of piano music like Poulenc hardly ever come up for discussion here.
I admit I only know Poulenc's two-piano concerto, but I don't understand why I hear it all the time. I don't think it's a great work at all... I cringe from that opening crash and piano flourish. The simple-hommage-to-Classical-wait-no-just-boring Larghetto.. The 3rd movement is the highlight and somewhat catchy and bouncy, but overall, the piece is hardly worth the frequency of performance and airtime that I come across. I don't even own a recording of it and I hear it all the time...

What else by Poulenc is worthwhile?



Well, to me, Poulenc's 2-piano concerto is wonderful, so I wouldn't know what to hazard as a guess of something his you might think was worthwhile. It's quite possible you just don't care for his particular sensibility. But, if you want to check out some more - I very much like this Trio, for oboe, bassoon, and piano.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X0QX-06vco8

His clarinet sonata is excellent, too - a classic of that repertoire.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RMb_F9GsG8Q

-------------------------

Let's see, about that list -

Kenneth Leighton

There is a variety of piano works from him - sonatas, etudes, concertos, etc. This "Fantastia Contrapuntistica" is impressive, I think (historical note - Pollini gave the premiere performance, back in 1956)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h_ZIZ0mhc78

Harold Shapero

I love his three neo-classical "amateur" sonatas. I have to say, he certainly had high expectations of amateurs - these are not easy pieces. Here's the first one -

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PYGrrrhyvqo

Roger Sessions

He made three piano sonatas, the last two being rather tough (at least to me), but rewarding. Here's the second...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EjpcgoP_yiY

Ernest Krenek

He was quite prolific, and wrote in a variety of idioms, ranging from the simplest diatonic harmony to hard-core 12-tone stuff, sometimes within the same piece. Here's a fun example that covers quite a bit of ground in terms of tonality - his "George Washington Variations".

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d69sv7E0J7Y

Arthur Honegger

There's not a lot of piano music from Honegger. Long ago I got a recording that included his somewhat Stravinsky-ish Concertino, and I like it a lot. It's too bad it isn't heard more often -

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OeqhKYRV7ug

Igor Markevitch

His story is quite strange - he was becoming widely respected composer, but something happened, and he stopped composing while still fairly young, and went on to have a career as one of the great conductors of the 20th century. His Variations, Fugue and Envoi on a Theme of Handel for piano was his last original composition, and it is, IMO, a masterpiece. There's only one performance on YT that I found and it's frustrating in a couple of ways - one is that it is from a competition and the time bell cuts it off during the fugue. The other is that the sound is pretty murky, and the pianist really deserves much better. But beggars can't be choosers, I guess, so here it it...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2lHSQopQQbM

Sigrid [sic] Karg-Elert

(That was a typo in the first name, of course.) Karg-Elert is mostly known to the organ world these days, I think, but he wrote other music (my first encounter with his music long ago was through some etudes for solo saxophone, and IIRC, they were pretty interesting). I was thinking of his big, feverishly late-Romantic third piano sonata when I mentioned him, and it turns out I can't find a recording of it on YT at all (but I know it has been recorded). You can find the score at IMSLP, at any rate.

Charles Koechlin

Koechlin was very prolific, and left a good deal of piano music. His Paysages et Marines are fairly representative, I think.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UqLdITP6HO0

He's also (rather surprisingly) BBC Radio 3's "Composer of the Week" this week, so you can listen to that daily program (which is available on from their website for a week after it is first broadcast) to get a dose of his other music, and pick up various bits of information about his life.

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#1981305 - 11/01/12 10:49 AM Re: 'Most neglected' great piano composer on Pianist Corner? [Re: Francisco Scalco]
Tim Adrianson Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/07/10
Posts: 1044
Certainly agree with you on this one, Francisco! After trying to identify in my own mind composers who wrote a significant body of really good piano music, but are only seldom mentioned in this Forum, three names -- Faure, Medtner, and Villa Lobos -- came to mind. And, of those three, Villa Lobos the least of all, and really by quite a lot. A real shame, because there are some wonderful treasures to be had.

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#1981335 - 11/01/12 01:12 PM Re: 'Most neglected' great piano composer on Pianist Corner? [Re: wr]
bennevis Online   content
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/14/10
Posts: 5008
Originally Posted By: wr
Koechlin... and left a good deal of piano music. His Paysages et Marines are fairly representative, I think.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UqLdITP6HO0

He's also (rather surprisingly) BBC Radio 3's "Composer of the Week" this week, so you can listen to that daily program (which is available on from their website for a week after it is first broadcast) to get a dose of his other music, and pick up various bits of information about his life.



I've been listening to it all week (because I know very little of his music), and it confirms for me what I've long thought - that French composers of that era - especially 'Les Six' - were most comfortable writing for woodwind, even if they were pianists themselves. Their piano music are often not that interesting - Debussy and Ravel are the exceptions.

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#1981428 - 11/01/12 04:39 PM Re: 'Most neglected' great piano composer on Pianist Corner? [Re: Mark_C]
Vid Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/12/01
Posts: 830
Loc: Vancouver, B.C.
PDQ Bach
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#1981469 - 11/01/12 06:16 PM Re: 'Most neglected' great piano composer on Pianist Corner? [Re: Mark_C]
Mr. McFugue Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/18/03
Posts: 103
Loc: Tempe, AZ
Shostakovich comes to mind, along with Bartok, Stravinsky, and Schoenberg.

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#1981471 - 11/01/12 06:20 PM Re: 'Most neglected' great piano composer on Pianist Corner? [Re: Mark_C]
ChopinAddict Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/29/09
Posts: 6098
Loc: Land of the never-ending music
Nobody mentioned Albéniz yet?
_________________________



Music is my best friend.


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#1981507 - 11/01/12 07:57 PM Re: 'Most neglected' great piano composer on Pianist Corner? [Re: JoelW]
Samuel1993 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/02/08
Posts: 351
Loc: United Kingdom
Originally Posted By: mazurkajoe
I don't care what anyone says; Scott Joplin was a genius.

EDIT:

You know what, Mark? You might as well change the name of this thread to "Scott Joplin Appreciation Thread" because I (and others, I hope) am about to share like there's no tomorrow.

Here's me playing the famous Maple Leaf Rag a few years ago before I discovered classical music (or even how to read music). This was recorded on a pretty bad piano so I'm sorry about the tone.

Here are some less well-known Joplin rags that I'd like to share too:

The following rags are performed by Cory Hall, AKA BachScholar on YouTube.

Euphonic Sounds

The Cascades

Country Club

A Breeze from Alabama

Original Rags



Agreed! smile Over time, Joplin has become one of my favorite composers along with Mozart, Chopin, Schumann etc.

I believe many people brush him off as "just a Ragtime composer", but Joplin himself treated Ragtime as Classical. He innovated the genre into a form which should be treated the same as Classical. Look at works such as Bethena, Elite Syncopations, Euphonic Sounds, Pineapple Rag, Solace, Wall Street Rag etc, these are works of authentic genius. People also seem to forget this is the guy who wrote TWO Opera's (one of which, unfortunately is lost). His remaining Opera "Treemonisha", only exists in Piano/Vocal format as the orchestration was lost, but it has been orchestrated many times and it gives us a hint as to what it would have sounded like, and it's genius.

It's an absolute tragedy that he passed away so young. Before he died, he was working on a Symphony, Piano Concerto, Orchestrations of "Magnetic" and "Stoptime" Rags - which all remain lost. His final work Magnetic Rag, shows his general music direction and he was beginning to innovate Ragtime. If only his Symphony or Concerto had been finished, I think many more would appreciate his genius.

Another under-rated composer is Joseph Lamb. He composed some of the most beautiful, and intricate Rags without any musical training. I've also read a Biography on him, he sounded like a wonderful man with such a talent.
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#1981511 - 11/01/12 08:07 PM Re: 'Most neglected' great piano composer on Pianist Corner? [Re: Mark_C]
asthecrowflies Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/11/12
Posts: 122
Loc: London, Cambridge, San Francis...
Not sure if Ives counts, since he hardly wrote for piano. but what he wrote was pretty great.

+1 on Rzewski too

and Shostakovich, whose P&Fs i've recently fallen in love with
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#1981539 - 11/01/12 09:44 PM Re: 'Most neglected' great piano composer on Pianist Corner? [Re: Mark_C]
jdw Online   content
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/04/11
Posts: 961
Loc: Philadelphia, PA
I'll put in a word for Joaquin Rodrigo (not that I can play his piano music).
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#1981658 - 11/02/12 08:20 AM Re: 'Most neglected' great piano composer on Pianist Corner? [Re: wr]
Ridicolosamente Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/08/08
Posts: 1467
Loc: Miami, Florida, USA
Originally Posted By: wr
Let's see, about that list - ...
Thanks so much for taking the time. I look forward to listening.

-Daniel
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Currently working on:
-Dane Rudhyar's Stars from Pentagrams No 3

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#1981711 - 11/02/12 11:25 AM Re: 'Most neglected' great piano composer on Pianist Corner? [Re: asthecrowflies]
AldenH Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/22/11
Posts: 412
Loc: Texas
Originally Posted By: asthecrowflies
Not sure if Ives counts, since he hardly wrote for piano. but what he wrote was pretty great.


Ives was a complete genius, and his vision suits the piano well in a variety of senses. He wasn't massively prolific for the instrument, but "hardly wrote" is misleading: two massive sonatas, a short sonata, multiple etudes... certainly everything except for the Concord Sonata is neglected.

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#1981732 - 11/02/12 11:58 AM Re: 'Most neglected' great piano composer on Pianist Corner? [Re: AldenH]
asthecrowflies Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/11/12
Posts: 122
Loc: London, Cambridge, San Francis...
Originally Posted By: AldenH
Ives was a complete genius, and his vision suits the piano well in a variety of senses. He wasn't massively prolific for the instrument, but "hardly wrote" is misleading: two massive sonatas, a short sonata, multiple etudes... certainly everything except for the Concord Sonata is neglected.


His piano works are a tiny portion of his oeuvre, but i guess you're right that what he did do was pretty massive. it's like calling Mendelssohn a violin composer though - he didn't write much, but what he did write was pretty substantial.

Some autumn morning music for you
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l-pjG1FQtlY
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Toccata Boogie -- piano solo
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