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Do you have any particular musician as a reference when playing or composing a piece ?

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Hello everybody!

As a pianist, I usually hear to performances of the piece I am preparing to have some references.Although my favourite pianist is Martha Argerich with no doubts, I try to keep open-minded to other pianists (famous or not) to have a bigger vision of the piece.

Also, when I'm going to compose something, in particular, a sonata, for example, I listen to a lot of Mozart and Haydn sonatas so that I can encompass better the style.

I'm curious to know if you have any musician as a reference or if you listen to several musicians when preparing a piece or when you want to compose in a particular style?

Here I attach a delightful article about some of the greatest pianists and composers along with the history. I enjoyed it and found some fantastic inspirations. Hope you find it useful too!



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Beethoven and Bach are my go to "teachers" when writing music regardless of the genre or style.  If I'm actively trying to write in the classical style, Mozart of course.

That pianist list is missing a few younger pianists who in my mind are or will certainly end up being among the all time greats.  Yuja Wang, (who I think is the reincarnation of Horowitz), and Daniil Trifonov are exceptional pianists.  Charles-Valentin Alkan, a contemporary of Liszt and Chopin, was considered every much their equal, perhaps more so in regards to technique, and his music is notoriously fiendishly difficult which reflects this.

I don't think Schubert was ever considered a great pianist (though certainly a great composer for piano) and Lang Lang being on the list... I just rolled my eyes a little.

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For me, Beethoven's influence always shows(with maybe a few exceptions). It has even showed up when I was trying to emulate someone else. I remember once trying to write a Scherzo that sounded Haydnesque, you know with all the rhythmic and dynamic humor that Haydn does. And I was given this suggestion to have a sudden loud chord across the keyboard, and I've seen Haydn do that in perhaps his most famous symphony of all time so I went with it. And can you guess what kind of comment I got from that sudden forte? Well I got something along the lines of this:


This sounds more like Beethoven than Haydn

even though I knew Haydn has pulled off a similar trick. Then again, Beethoven took that sudden forte trick a step further than Haydn did. Instead of just using it for surprise moments like Haydn did, Beethoven used this as the dynamic backbone of a lot of his pieces, from solo piano to full orchestra. So I'm not too surprised, but still, that just shows that I never really escape Beethoven's grasp, probably because he is my favorite composer of all time.

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