Updated: Mar 18
There is a wide array of a solo piece for the piano that we even forget to recognise the piano has a part to play in a larger scale.
Most recently I was accompanying students of different instruments. I was noticing not just how the pieces for the instruments and voice are different with their own challenges but also how different the piano parts were. From rhythmic songs to musical songs like America to Film music (and film scores) like James Bond which captures a shady atmosphere.
With a large selection of chamber music for piano, it is difficult to decide where to start. Piano concertos are always popular to play. Whether one of Mozart’s 26 concerti, Beethoven, Chopin, Liszt, Ravel, Mendelssohn. There are many to recommend.
For a jazzy twist, Gershwin’s piano concerto or Rhapsody in Blue. Shostakovich, Prokofiev and Rachmaninoff wrote amazing works for piano and orchestra, American composer Barber integrated piano for some orchestral works such as his orchestral Essays. Plus other ones like Saint Saens Aquarium for Carnival of the Animals.
Other than this, smaller scale groups such as piano trios- Mozart in particular. Some fantastic piano quintets (piano + string quartet) such as Dvorak Dumka or Mendelssohn. Chamber music was more prevalent when it came to Baroque music as a keyboard instrument such as clavichord or harpsichord would usually accompany. Be it Bach such as his Brandenberg Concertos, works by Handel, Telemann and many others. Even down to having 2 pianists play on the same piano gives a range of repertoire
Chamber music is perhaps becoming much more frequently played in recent years. It’s become very popular with film music and within film composers. Also composers such as Ludovico Einaudi wrote many wonderful, inspiring and imaginative pieces for piano and strings such as Giorni Despari, Fuori dal Mondo, Divenire and Andare