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Composer of the month

Frédéric Chopin

1810-1849

Polonaise in G Minor
Chopin’s first piece that he wrote when he was 7 years old.

Mazurka in G minor, Op. 67. No. 2
(Played by Arthur Rubinstein)

Nocturne op.9 No.2

Fantaisie Impromptu, Op. 66
(Played by Arthur Rubinstein)

Chopin bench in Warsaw, Poland

Chopin Museum in Warsaw & Chopin’s Birthplace in Zelazowa Wola

Chopin’s Preludes

Chopin admired the music of Bach. Inspired by Bach’s collection of Preludes and Fugues in each key, called The Well Tempered Clavier, Chopin wrote his own series of Preludes in each key, 12 major and 12 minor. Unlike Bach’s music, Chopin’s preludes are not followed by fugues. Also, Bach ordered them chromatically (C major, C Minor, C# major, C# Minor, etc.), while Chopin’s Preludes follow the circle of fifths (C major, A minor, G major, E minor, D major, B minor, etc.). Listen to the most famous ones.

Prelude in E minor, Op. 28, No. 4
Listen to the long notes of the right hand melody held above changing left hand chords.

Prelude in B minor, Op. 28, No. 6
Here the melody is in the left hand and uses arpeggios while the right hand plays gentle chords in eighth notes.

Prelude in A major, Op. 28, No. 7
This prelude is short and uses a repeated dotted rhythm pattern. The melody stands above the chords.

Prelude in D flat major, Op. 28, No. 15
Nicknamed “Raindrop” this prelude has a beautiful right-hand melody with pulsating left hand accompaniment. The middle section gets gloomier and more intense, and the first melody returns at the end.

Prelude in E minor, Op. 28, No. 4

Prelude in B minor, Op. 28, No. 6

Prelude in A major, Op. 28, No. 7

Prelude in D flat major, Op. 28, No. 15