From Czerny to Chopin Essay

In Chopin’s lifetime, he totally wrote twenty seven fabulous piano etudes (three of them were without opus numbers) which were abstruse piano playing technique and valuable artistry. For most pianists, it is not an easy work to deal with these pieces well since they require the pianist to grasp the exquisite piano playing technique. How do we train our fingers more flexible to apply to these works? After all most pianists are not talented as Horowitz, so we have to go through some tough practice and the best way is practicing Czerny’s piano etudes.

1Carl Czerny was a great composer and piano teacher whom lived in the Biedermeier period which was the late Classical Period and the early Romantic Period. As Beethoven’s apprentice, he not only inherited to his student, Franz Liszt-another great pianist and composer whom lived in the Romantic Period-well theoretical music education, also nurtured him with exquisite piano playing technique. In his whole life, 2he composed more than eight hundred piano etudes for students’ to practice in any kinds of piano studying stages. But not all etudes were required to be played by us because not all of them were effective for us. (Piano technique, Walter Gieseking, page 50)In this paper, I will select some Chopin etudes to research, and then research how to use the Czerny’s advanced etudes to prepare to play them. Among of all the Czerny’s piano etudes, the Opus 740 was the most difficult one, and from the artistry aspect, it was the one which most closed to Chopin’s etudes.

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Chopin’s etudes were divided into two parts, the first part was twelve pieces with opus number ten, and the other twelve works was with opus twenty five. 3Chopin wrote the first part of etudes which dedicated to Liszt during 1…

… really demanded us to spend a lot of time to practice, since these etudes were so prominent in the development of piano history that we must experience them very carefully.

Works Cited

1Zaluski, Iwo and Pamela Zaluski. “Carl Czerny: Composer of the Biedermeier Age.” Contemporary Review, vol. 281, issue 1642 (Nov. 2002): 301.

2Zaluski, Iwo and Pamela Zaluski. “Carl Czerny: Composer of the Biedermeier Age.” Contemporary Review, vol. 281, issue 1642 (Nov. 2002): 303.

3Huneker, James. “The Studies: Titanic Experiments.” in Chopin: the man and his music (New York: Dover Publications, c1966), 81.

4Lederer, Victor. “Big Ideas in Small Packages: The Etudes and Preludes.” in Chopin: a listener’s guide to the master of the piano (Pompton Plains, N.J.: Amadeus Press, 2006),5Bailie, Eleanor. “Studies” in Chopin: A graded practical guide (London: Kahn & Averill, 1998), 386.


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