Welcome to the Piano World Piano Forums
Over 2 million posts about pianos, digital pianos, and all types of keyboard instruments
Join the World's Largest Community of Piano Lovers (it's free)
It's Fun to Play the Piano ... Please Pass It On!

SEARCH
the Forums & Piano World

This custom search works much better than the built in one and allows searching older posts.
(ad 125) Sweetwater - Digital Keyboards & Other Gear
Digital Pianos at Sweetwater
(ad) Pearl River
Pearl River Pianos
(ad) Pianoteq
Latest Pianoteq add-on instrument: U4 upright piano
(ad) P B Guide
Acoustic & Digital Piano Guide
PianoSupplies.com (150)
Piano Accessories Music Related Gifts Piano Tuning Equipment Piano Moving Equipment
We now offer Gift Certificates in our online store!
(ad) Estonia Piano
Estonia Piano
Quick Links to Useful Stuff
Our Classified Ads
Find Piano Professionals-

*Piano Dealers - Piano Stores
*Piano Tuners
*Piano Teachers
*Piano Movers
*Piano Restorations
*Piano Manufacturers
*Organs

Quick Links:
*Advertise On Piano World
*Free Piano Newsletter
*Online Piano Recitals
*Piano Recitals Index
*Piano Accessories
* Buying a Piano
*Buying A Acoustic Piano
*Buying a Digital Piano
*Pianos for Sale
*Sell Your Piano
*How Old is My Piano?
*Piano Books
*Piano Art, Pictures, & Posters
*Directory/Site Map
*Contest
*Links
*Virtual Piano
*Music Word Search
*Piano Screen Saver
*Piano Videos
*Virtual Piano Chords
Topic Options
#2008241 - 01/02/13 10:09 PM Your favorite "background music" pieces?
Lollipop Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/28/09
Posts: 820
Loc: Georgia
This isn't really a teaching question, but I know you guys best...

I have been asked by an acquaintance to play "background" music at the grand opening of his new .... funeral parlor. He asked me to just play "some classical stuff" (as opposed to pop, not as opposed to baroque.) The problem is, I don't have an extensive rep of the calm, soothing background music I think he has in mind, (not the kind of music I play for fun) and have less than 3 weeks to put together something. I have several nice books of hymn arrangements that I can use as backup, but he specifically requested classical, so I want to make an effort.

I would like to stick to intermediate level pieces so that I can learn them quicker. I'm guessing I will need 30 minutes worth or so. Maybe more. I've been playing through books looking for appropriate things to learn or polish, but thought I'd ask here for suggestions.

Any ideas?
_________________________
piano teacher

Top
(ad) My Music Staff
Check out the new way to manage your music studio
#2008256 - 01/02/13 10:40 PM Re: Your favorite "background music" pieces? [Re: Lollipop]
AZNpiano Online   sleepy
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/07/07
Posts: 5484
Loc: Orange County, CA
2nd movements of sonatinas by Clementi, Diabelli, and some Kuhlau. Lichner wrote some nice 2nd movements in his sonatinas as well. You can get some sonatina album and play through all the slow movements.

You can also play some Heller studies undertempo. Nobody will ever know the difference.

If these are all too easy, go for the slow movements of Mozart and Haydn. Lots of gems there.
_________________________
Private Piano Teacher and MTAC Member

Top
#2008263 - 01/02/13 11:07 PM Re: Your favorite "background music" pieces? [Re: Lollipop]
Minniemay Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/09
Posts: 1702
Loc: CA
Time to pull out your anthologies!
_________________________
B.A., Piano, Piano Pegagogy, Music Ed.
M.M., Piano

Top
#2008428 - 01/03/13 09:12 AM Re: Your favorite "background music" pieces? [Re: Lollipop]
Lollipop Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/28/09
Posts: 820
Loc: Georgia
Never thought of using the slow movements of sonatinas! Great idea! My son and I had a blast playing Clementi together on two pianos over Christmas with the second piano parts, so those are still sitting out. I'll pull out some other sonatina books and give them a look.

I went through one Chopin book yesterday, and found a few potentials. Maybe Bach Prelude #1 - not slow, but still soothing. Maybe Beethoven Sonatina in G. Plan to look through my old John Thompson (if I can find it), too.
_________________________
piano teacher

Top
#2008439 - 01/03/13 09:34 AM Re: Your favorite "background music" pieces? [Re: Lollipop]
Morodiene Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/07
Posts: 11908
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
There are some great books that have piano arrangements of well-known classical pieces of all kinds. I would probably steer clear of anything that sounds too dark or depressing, however (no Chopin funeral march!). Being in a funeral parlor is depressing enough. I'm sure the owner wants to give off the impression of being comforting. wink Also, avoid pieces that are too flashy/bombastic.

Chopin raindrop prelude would be perfect, Grieg Nocturne, Mozart K 332 2nd movement is gorgeous but much less recognizable. Beethoven 2nd movements tend to be perfect for this as well, but again, stay away form anything too dark.
_________________________
private piano/voice teacher - full time
MTNA member
www.valeoconservatory.com
Petrof 9'2 Concert, Yamaha G3, Roland FP-7, Yamaha MOX6, Kawai MP11

Top
#2008474 - 01/03/13 10:59 AM Re: Your favorite "background music" pieces? [Re: Lollipop]
Lollipop Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/28/09
Posts: 820
Loc: Georgia
Thanks, I'll check these out. Don't you think Raindrop Prelude might be too suspenseful? I always feel a great sense of foreboding from all those repeated notes.

I'm liking some of the minor key waltzes.
_________________________
piano teacher

Top
#2010776 - 01/07/13 05:52 PM Re: Your favorite "background music" pieces? [Re: Lollipop]
Lollipop Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/28/09
Posts: 820
Loc: Georgia
I went to the music store today, and came home with a volume of pieces "selected and edited" by Keith Snell called "Quiet Classics". The introduction says he compiled these for himself and for his students, when asked to provide background music for various events. The pieces are arranged to flow from one to another, and he has put them in four sets of 20-25 minutes of music each. I've only played through the first set so far, but it is quite sight-readable and very appropriate.

It has many of of the pieces I was already considering, plus others I hadn't thought of.

Sorry to sound like a commercial. Wanted to share this in case anyone else ever finds themselves in this same situation.
_________________________
piano teacher

Top
#2010825 - 01/07/13 08:12 PM Re: Your favorite "background music" pieces? [Re: Lollipop]
Stanny Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/08/06
Posts: 1461
Thanks, good to know!
_________________________
~Stanny~

Independent Music Teacher
Certified Piano Teacher, American College of Musicians
Member: MTNA, NGPT, ASMTA, NAMTA

Top
#2028966 - 02/07/13 07:41 PM Re: Your favorite "background music" pieces? [Re: Lollipop]
Overexposed Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2647
Originally Posted By: Lollipop
I went to the music store today, and came home with a volume of pieces "selected and edited" by Keith Snell called "Quiet Classics". The introduction says he compiled these for himself and for his students, when asked to provide background music for various events. The pieces are arranged to flow from one to another, and he has put them in four sets of 20-25 minutes of music each. I've only played through the first set so far, but it is quite sight-readable and very appropriate.

It has many of of the pieces I was already considering, plus others I hadn't thought of.

Sorry to sound like a commercial. Wanted to share this in case anyone else ever finds themselves in this same situation.


Thank you for this suggestion! After reading your post I ordered "Quiet Classics". I've played through the first set and I think this is a wonderful collection!

Top
#2029187 - 02/08/13 07:35 AM Re: Your favorite "background music" pieces? [Re: Overexposed]
GlassLove Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/22/10
Posts: 769
Loc: Michigan
My teacher has the Quiet Classics book too. She uses it for exactly the same purpose. It is a beautiful collection.
_________________________
Christine











Top
#2070017 - 04/24/13 02:57 PM Re: Your favorite "background music" pieces? [Re: GlassLove]
Barb860 Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/11/09
Posts: 1646
Loc: northern California
Just wanted to chime in to say that I like Quiet Classics a lot, too. An adult student of mine is enjoying some pieces from it. Pieces are across the board as far as levels go; 5-10 and perhaps a few beyond. Lovely collection. Thanks, Lollipop, for the tip!
_________________________
Piano Teacher

Top
#2070052 - 04/24/13 04:02 PM Re: Your favorite "background music" pieces? [Re: AZNpiano]
John v.d.Brook Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/18/06
Posts: 7368
Loc: Olympia, Washington, USA
Originally Posted By: AZNpiano
2nd movements of sonatinas by Clementi, Diabelli, and some Kuhlau. Lichner wrote some nice 2nd movements in his sonatinas as well. You can get some sonatina album and play through all the slow movements.

You can also play some Heller studies undertempo. Nobody will ever know the difference.

If these are all too easy, go for the slow movements of Mozart and Haydn. Lots of gems there.

Ditto, especially the Mozart sonatas.
_________________________
"Those who dare to teach must never cease to learn." -- Richard Henry Dann
Full-time Private Piano Teacher offering Piano Lessons in Olympia, WA. www.mypianoteacher.com
Certified by the American College of Musicians; member NGPT, MTNA, WSMTA, OMTA

Top
#2070302 - 04/24/13 11:06 PM Re: Your favorite "background music" pieces? [Re: Lollipop]
dumdumdiddle Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/16/06
Posts: 1265
Loc: California
Go to www.musicnotes.com and type in Brian Crain. It's more contemporary but they play it on my iTunes radio station called 'Whisperings' and it's nice.
_________________________
Music School Owner
Early Childhood Music Teacher/Group Piano Teacher/Private Piano Teacher
Member of MTAC and Guild

Top
#2070312 - 04/24/13 11:16 PM Re: Your favorite "background music" pieces? [Re: Lollipop]
Polyphonist Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/03/13
Posts: 7598
Loc: New York City
Chopin Preludes Op 28/14, 16, 18, 22, 24, Etudes 10/4, 12, 25/10, 11, 12, and throw in the last movement of Op 35.
_________________________
Regards,

Polyphonist

Top
#2070496 - 04/25/13 08:42 AM Re: Your favorite "background music" pieces? [Re: Lollipop]
TimR Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/17/04
Posts: 3200
Loc: Virginia, USA
Go for very easy pieces and play them flawlessly. Avoid anything show-offy and anything with challenges. You have to change your mindset for a commercial gig like this. It's about pleasing the customer, not about making great art.

Have your setlist prepared with everything in order for as little dead air between pieces as possible - ideally you'll have no dead air, just doing chord progressions as needed to the key of the next piece.

Half an hour early is on time, dress conservatively, and politely decline alcohol.
_________________________
gotta go practice

Top
#2070800 - 04/25/13 04:51 PM Re: Your favorite "background music" pieces? [Re: Polyphonist]
AZNpiano Online   sleepy
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/07/07
Posts: 5484
Loc: Orange County, CA
Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
Chopin Preludes Op 28/14, 16, 18, 22, 24, Etudes 10/4, 12, 25/10, 11, 12, and throw in the last movement of Op 35.

Right. While you're at it, throw in all the Transcendental Etudes by Liszt.

Did you even read the thread before you made those recommendations?
_________________________
Private Piano Teacher and MTAC Member

Top
#2070801 - 04/25/13 04:52 PM Re: Your favorite "background music" pieces? [Re: Lollipop]
Minniemay Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/09
Posts: 1702
Loc: CA
Personally, I hate background music. I'd rather have silence.
_________________________
B.A., Piano, Piano Pegagogy, Music Ed.
M.M., Piano

Top
#2070917 - 04/25/13 08:09 PM Re: Your favorite "background music" pieces? [Re: Minniemay]
currawong Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/15/07
Posts: 5930
Loc: Down Under
Originally Posted By: Minniemay
Personally, I hate background music. I'd rather have silence.
Oh me too, me too. If the music is good I want to listen to it. If it isn't, I don't want to hear it at all.

That said, I used to have a restaurant job playing what most people seemed to regard as background music. But *I* was listening. smile

And another disturbing trend I noticed recently at a function. It's one thing to have background music playing while there's some ceremonial action being performed, or where people are sitting quietly waiting, but it's quite another to have background music to announcements being read. What???
_________________________
Du holde Kunst...

Top
#2070938 - 04/25/13 08:29 PM Re: Your favorite "background music" pieces? [Re: Lollipop]
Bluoh Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/20/11
Posts: 421
Loc: Canada
Barcarolle by Alkan, Nocturne No 2 by John Field, the second movement of Pathetique... and check out 16 Beautiful Contemporary Piano Solos.

Although I'm not a big fan of "background music" in general. ; )

Top
#2071311 - 04/26/13 08:46 AM Re: Your favorite "background music" pieces? [Re: Lollipop]
Overexposed Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2647
I played harp for a memorial service held by a friend whose child was stillborn. After the service I moved my harp to the receiving line, and played "background music". Later my friend told me it was so difficult to receive people in silence. She and her husband had a few minutes receiving people without music as I was in process of moving the harp. And she said it made it so much easier once the music started.

Music has a powerful effect on people. I don't dismiss "background music" as insignificant.

Top
#2071332 - 04/26/13 09:16 AM Re: Your favorite "background music" pieces? [Re: Lollipop]
Overexposed Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2647
I am reminded of a play in which the a nervous mother wants the 20 year old daughter to help decorate a 3 foot high plastic Christmas tree. The daughter announces "I am not going to waste my artistic talent on that pathetic little tree!"

(Both characters were played by men dressed as women. They speak in a Southern drawl. Daughter in sweat pants with padded hips etc. LOL.)

Anyway, I say go ahead and use your artistic talent in people's daily lives. It matters to people.


Edited by Ann in Kentucky (04/26/13 09:18 AM)

Top
#2071337 - 04/26/13 09:24 AM Re: Your favorite "background music" pieces? [Re: Lollipop]
Minniemay Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/09
Posts: 1702
Loc: CA
I didn't say anything about playing it. I hate listening to it. I can't "not" listen to it. It's distracting.
_________________________
B.A., Piano, Piano Pegagogy, Music Ed.
M.M., Piano

Top
#2071625 - 04/26/13 03:15 PM Re: Your favorite "background music" pieces? [Re: Lollipop]
kissyana Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/12/07
Posts: 199
Loc: Northeast Illinois
Why not use some William Gillock and Robert Vandall pieces? I haven't played publicly for a while but when I've had last minute gigs, I'll use some nice Gillock and Vandall pieces. I learned some of Robert Vandall's preludes while growing up and liked them so much that I still read through them for pleasure. They really sound nice and you can always improvise on them if you like. As stated before, it's a good idea to play something that sounds nice and that you are very comfortable playing. Nothing flashy or terribly tricky. Some George Winston and Ludovico Einaudi pieces might work nicely, too.
Einaudi example: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M8lAW1weiMc
Winston example: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5fN46MheyPU (ok, not his song but an arrangement by him)


Edited by kissyana (04/26/13 03:16 PM)

Top
#2071800 - 04/26/13 09:12 PM Re: Your favorite "background music" pieces? [Re: Lollipop]
ShiroKuro Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/26/04
Posts: 3483
Loc: not in Japan anymore
I got Quiet Classics thanks to this thread! So, thank you!

Also, count me in the group of those who don't like music as background, either I give it all my attention or none. I'm in grad school right now, and I cannot study with music playing! I do not get that at all.
_________________________
Started piano June 1999. My recordings at Box.Net:
https://app.box.com/s/j4rgyhn72uvluemg1m6u




Top
#2072105 - 04/27/13 12:52 PM Re: Your favorite "background music" pieces? [Re: ShiroKuro]
Overexposed Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2647
Originally Posted By: ShiroKuro
I got Quiet Classics thanks to this thread! So, thank you!

Also, count me in the group of those who don't like music as background, either I give it all my attention or none. I'm in grad school right now, and I cannot study with music playing! I do not get that at all.


Hi ShiroKuro,
Seeing your name reminds me to polish River Flows In You. It's also a good background piece.

Some people overdo it with background music-- listening while doing an activity that requires concentration or listening at bedtime to go to sleep. I don't get that either.

But background music is sometimes of more interest than foreground activities. I recall having dental work accompanied by "My my my my Shirona" in the background. It was great to have something to focus on and it struck my funny bone the way the drilling sound accompanied the music.

And all due respect to the Chop Wood, Carry Water approach to mindless tasks. I agree that menial tasks can be made into a meditation. But often when washing dishes or driving a car I'd rather sing along with background music.

Top
#2072143 - 04/27/13 01:56 PM Re: Your favorite "background music" pieces? [Re: Overexposed]
keystring Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/11/07
Posts: 11675
Loc: Canada
Originally Posted By: Ann in Kentucky
. I recall having dental work accompanied by ....

Oh my, the memories you bring back! I cannot block out background music and or not listen actively. During one dental treatment they had my mouth pried open doing some long and complicated procedure. There was a song playing that cycled through the same refrain over and over, and the singer was straining at the top note each time and I'd start to tense whenever that part was coming up. Finally both the song and that part of the procedure was done. I said "That was painful!" They "The procedure?" Me "No, the music!" Then I sat bolt upright and totally howled with laughter I'd been holding in for about 5 minutes. Their puzzled faces made all the more funny.

Quote:
But often when washing dishes or driving a car I'd rather sing along with background music.

That is something that I can relate to. smile

Top
#2072309 - 04/27/13 05:37 PM Re: Your favorite "background music" pieces? [Re: Lollipop]
Overexposed Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2647
laugh

Yes, I know what you mean keystring. Background music can also be worse than going through a dental procedure. Depends on the music.



Edited by Ann in Kentucky (04/27/13 07:45 PM)

Top
#2072403 - 04/27/13 08:15 PM Re: Your favorite "background music" pieces? [Re: Overexposed]
Barb860 Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/11/09
Posts: 1646
Loc: northern California
Originally Posted By: Ann in Kentucky
laugh

Yes, I know what you mean keystring. Background music can also be worse than going through a dental procedure. Depends on the music.

Haha, yes. I attended an open-house event and there was a pianist playing background music. I was there for at least an hour and the pianist played "Three Coins in the Fountain" the.....whole.....time....
_________________________
Piano Teacher

Top

Moderator:  Ken Knapp 
What's Hot!!
HOW TO POST PICTURES on the Piano Forums
-------------------
Sharing is Caring!
About the Buttons
-------------------
Forums Rules & Help
-------------------
ADVERTISE
on Piano World

The world's most popular piano web site.
-------------------
PIANO BOOKS
Interesting books about the piano, pianists, piano history, biographies, memoirs and more!
(ad) HAILUN Pianos
Hailun Pianos - Click for More
ad (Casio)
Celviano by Casio Rebate
Ad (Seiler/Knabe)
Seiler Pianos
Sheet Music
(PW is an affiliate)
Sheet Music Plus Featured Sale
(125ad) Dampp Chaser
Dampp Chaser Piano Life Saver
(ad) Lindeblad Piano
Lindeblad Piano Restoration
New Topics - Multiple Forums
help with finger numbers in this piece...
by PianoKimmy
09/18/14 05:35 AM
Most Difficult?
by SiFi
09/18/14 01:21 AM
What is most common size wire to break?
by Ed McMorrow, RPT
09/18/14 12:19 AM
Will this Piano Room have good Acoustics?
by flamenco88
09/17/14 10:59 PM
Proud new owner of a Yamaha P22
by amanda416
09/17/14 09:04 PM
Who's Online
57 registered (alexbergauer, barbaram, ando, aesop, allakart, AZNpiano, 13 invisible), 923 Guests and 22 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Forum Stats
76237 Members
42 Forums
157598 Topics
2314884 Posts

Max Online: 15252 @ 03/21/10 11:39 PM
(ads by Google)

Visit our online store for gifts for music lovers

 
Help keep the forums up and running with a donation, any amount is appreciated!
Or by becoming a Subscribing member! Thank-you.
Donate   Subscribe
 
Our Piano Related Classified Ads
|
Dealers | Tuners | Lessons | Movers | Restorations | Pianos For Sale | Sell Your Piano |

Advertise on Piano World
| Subscribe | Piano World | PianoSupplies.com | Advertise on Piano World | Donate | Link to Us | Classifieds |
| |Contact | Privacy | Legal | About Us | Site Map | Free Newsletter | Press Room |


copyright 1997 - 2014 Piano World ® all rights reserved
No part of this site may be reproduced without prior written permission