Piano for the 21st Century

Category: Composers

Muzio Clementi

Muzio Clementi (1752 – 1832) was a contemporary of both Mozart and Beethoven due to his relatively long life.

Although Clementi outlived Beethoven, his music more closely resembles the earlier Classical Style of Mozart.

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Piano Works

Although Clementi wrote many piano sonatas, some of his best known piano works are his sonatinas (little sonatas), which are still used by piano teachers all over the world.

Other Enterprises

As well as being a renowned composer and pianist – once he had a piano duel with Mozart – Clementi was also a pedagogue, piano manufacturer, teacher and publisher.

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Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756 – 1791) was born in Salzburg (modern day Austria), to a composer, Leopold Mozart.

Childhood

Taking early instruction from his father, Wolfgang was an accomplished keyboardist by the age of 5, and also composed music (although his compositions were almost certainly corrected and improved by his father, Leopold).

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Keyboard works

Mozart wrote 18 Piano Sonatas, and although they are not as popular as Beethoven’s set, they are still held in high esteem amongst pianists and musicians.

Some of Mozart’s most popular Sonata movements include:

  • Sonata in C major (K545)
  • Sonata in A major (K331)

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J.S. Bach

Johann Sebastian Bach (1685 – 1750) was a composer from the late Boroque period of classical music.

Born into a family of musicians, Bach was first instructed by his father, Ambrosius, and later at the age of 10 by his eldest brother, Johann Christoph.

Counterpoint and Harmony

A contemporary George Frederic Handel, Bach is also renouned for his conterpount and harmony, which can be found, for example, in his fugue writing and his harmonisations of contemporary hymn melodies.

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Keyboard Works

Some of Bach’s most well known keyboard works include:

The Well Tempered Clavier Books I and II

Each of these books include 24 preludes and fugues of varying difficulty.

The Goldberg Variations

Each variation of this lengthy keyboard work employs the same underlying bassline.

Two and three part inventions

As with the fugues, these works are highly contrapuntal.

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Ludwig van Beethoven

Ludwig Van Beethoven was born in Bonn in December 1770 and died in Vienna on 26th March 1827.

He is best known for his piano sonatas, string quartets and symphonies and is considered as the first composer of the Romantic era.

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Piano Sonatas

Beethoven’s Piano Sonatas were written between 1782 and 1822 and are now considered one of the most important collective works in the piano repertoire.

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