The Evolving Piano

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hammers at rest

The piano is taught more than any other single instrument in America. And children studying piano learn to give recital programs no sooner than they can muster a few tunes.

This week, host Terrance McKnight features music written for piano. However his approach is not to cover the the mammoth works from the genre nor present works chronologically or thematically. This show is about the many moods, colors, shades and styles of piano music and the ways they have evolved over the past 300 years. And for variation, we hear a splash of clarinet and coloratura.


Berceuse in D-flat, Op. 57

Frederic Chopin




Troubled Water

Margaret Bonds

Joel Fan

Reference Recordings


Four Piano Blues

Aaron Copland

Alan Marks



“La vega”

Isaac Abeniz

Marc-andre Hamelin



Scherzo diabolico

Charles-Valentin alkan

Laurent Martin

Bernard Ringeissen



Suggestion diabolique

Sergei Prokofiev

Andrei Gavrilov



The Shepard on the Rock

Franz Schubert

Kathleen Battle, soprano

James Levine, piano

Karl Leister, clarinet



Piano sonata No. 9

Alexander Scriabin

Marcandre Hamelin


Ballade, Op. 46

Samuel Barber

John Browning

Music Masters


The Negro Speaks of Rivers

Margaret Bonds

Darryl Taylor



Six Morceaux for piano

Sergei Rachmaninoff

Martha Argerich, piano

Mirabela Dina, piano




Phillip Glass

DBR, violin

Thirsty Ear