Charles Villiers Stanford’s Experiences with and contributions to the solo piano repertoire

Abstract

Charles Villiers Stanford (1852-1924) has long been considered as one of the leaders of the English Musical Renaissance on account of his work as composer, conductor and pedagogue. In his earlier years he rose to fame as a piano soloist, having been introduced to the instrument at a very young age. It is no surprise then that his first attempts at composition included a march for piano in i860. The piano continued to play an important role in Stanford’s compositional career and his last piano work, Three Fancies, is dated 1923. With over thirty works for the instrument, not counting his piano duets, Stanford’s piano pieces can be broadly placed in three categories: (i) piano miniatures or character pieces which are in the tradition of salon or domestic music; (ii) works which have a pedagogical function; and (iii) works which are written in a more virtuosic vein. In each of these categories many of the works remain unpublished. In most cases the piano scores are not available for purchase and this has hindered performances after his death

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