Rockin’ Playlists: Beginner Classical Part 1

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It’s never too early to begin listening to classical piano works of the great composers!  In fact, listening is essential to developing technique.  The best way to get the body to respond to producing specific musical ideas is to have a clear mental picture of the idea in the first place.  That requires listening!

Rockin' Playlist: Beginning Classical Part 1

So, here are some great classical pieces that beginning pianists can benefit from listening to that demonstrate technique and musical elements that they will be working on in their lessons.

  • Prelude in C Sharp minor, Op. 3, No. 2 – Sergei Rachmaninoff

Rachmaninov is one of my absolute favorite composers, and one of the reasons is because he is so dramatic!  His Prelude in C Sharp minor, Op. 3 No. 2 is a great example of varied dynamics (loudness and softness in music) in classical music.  It has some instances of hushed turmoil and other very bombastic, loud sections.  You can’t help but love it!  Check out this performance from Evgeny Kissin.

To purchase another recording of this piece click here.

To purchase the full album click either MP3 or CD.

  • Rondo alla Turca (Turkish March) from Piano Sonata No. 11 in A major, K 331/300i – Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Mozart’s Rondo Alla Turca utilizes major vs minor tonalities throughout it’s rondo form.  Can you hear where the mood changes in this piece?  You can also hear the rondo form which has certain sections that repeat throughout the piece.

To purchase a copy of Lang Lang’s recorded version click here.

To purchase his full album click either MP3 or CD.

  • Golliwog’s Cakewalk -Claude Debussy

Oh my stars, I LOVE Debussy’s Golliwog’s Cakewalk!  It’s one of my all-time faves.  It’s very playful, and the staccato (short, disconnected) texture throughout most of the piece is what gives it it’s jolly flavor.  There are some legato (smooth, connected) lines thrown into the mix as well – see if you can find them!  What I love about this video is that it provides a close shot of the pianist’s hands so that you can see the difference in technique required for staccato vs. legato.   Listen to Chenyin Li perform this fun piece.

To purchase another recording of this piece click here.

To purchase the full album click either MP3 or CD.

…Stay tuned for Rockin’ Playlists: Classical Beginner Part 2 next week!

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