Pieces that mean the most to me

Musicians are often asked the question, “Who’s your favorite composer?”. The problem is that I absolutely cannot answer that question! I have a lot of favorite composers, and even more importantly, I have a lot of favorite pieces.

A while ago, I wondered what I would come up with if I was allowed to answer that question at length with a list of all of my favorite classical works. So, I decided to try. What follows is a list of pieces that, over the years, have meant something special to me. I am not trying to say that these composers and pieces are “the best” or anything. Music is too subjective to even try to make a statement like that. These pieces are just those that I have been compelled to listen to over and over and that I feel have influenced me as a musician. The composers are roughly in chronological order, but there is no ranking or anything. Like I said, just a random list of the pieces that have moved me the most.

I guess I’m just posting this for anyone who might be curious about my tastes and preferences. Hope you find it interesting, and if there are any pieces here that you don’t know, you may just love them if you listen.

Baroque

  • J.S. Bach
    • Goldberg Variations
    • St. Matthew Passion
    • Toccata and Fugue in D minor (organ)
    • Partita No. 6 in E minor

Classical

  • W.A. Mozart
    • Fantasy and Sonata in C minor (K 475 and 457)
    • Requiem Mass
    • Symphony no. 40 in G minor
    • Piano Concerto No. 20 in D minor
  • L. v. Beethoven
    • Piano Sonata in F minor op. 57 (Appassionata)
    • Piano Sonata in C minor op. 111
    • Piano Concerto no. 4 in G major
    • Symphony no. 9
  • F. Schubert
    • String Quintet in C
    • Piano Sonata in B flat
    • Drei Klavierstucke
    • Winterreise

Romantic

  • Chopin
    • Piano Concerto no. 2 in F minor
    • Piano Sonata No. 3 in B minor
    • Ballade no. 4 in F minor
    • Fantasie Op. 49
  • Liszt
    • B minor Sonata
    • Transcendental Etudes
  • Mendelssohn
    • Variations Serieuses
    • Violin Concerto in E minor Op. 64
  • Brahms
    • Piano Quintet in F minor
    • Symphony no. 4 in E minor
    • Piano Concerto no. 1 in D minor
    • Cello Sonata no. 1 in E minor
  • Schumann
    • Fantasy in C major op. 17
    • Faschingsschwank aus Wien
  • Grieg
    • Piano Concerto in A minor
  • Tschaikovsky
    • Symphony no. 6 (Pathetique)
  • Fauré
    • Requiem

20th Century

  • Rachmaninoff
    • Piano Concerto no. 2
    • Trio Elegiaque no. 1
    • Cello Sonata in G minor
  • Prokofiev
    • Piano Sonatas 7 and 8
    • Piano Concertos 2 (G minor) and 3 (C)
  • Shostakovich
    • Piano Trio no. 2 in E minor
  • Stravinsky
    • Rite of Spring
  • Berg
    • Piano Sonata op. 1
  • Bernstein
    • Symphony no. 2 (Age of Anxiety)
  • Barber
    • Piano Concerto op. 38
  • Rzewski
    • The People United Will Never Be Defeated
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