Prelude in B Minor (Op. 28 No. 6)

ABRSM Grade 6 - B2

Chopin’s dark, somber Prélude in B minor is much more difficult to play than it looks. This video demonstrates how to approach this piece technically and musically with particular attention to the pedalling which requires a lot of thought

Contents

Author

Graham Fitch

Graham Fitch, based in London, maintains an international career not only as a pianist, but also as a teacher, adjudicator, examiner, lecturer, writer and commentator on piano playing and musical subjects.

Author profile >>

Subscribe for full access!

Get full access to our growing library of over 300 articles for as little as £9.99 per month or £99.99 a year. Click here to sign-up or click here to find-out more.

Related content

Sonata Pathétique in C Minor

(Op. 13)

If you have ever struggled with Beethoven’s Pathétique Sonata, this series of 11 videos is designed to help you solve some of the main technical and interpretative problems the work poses so that you will be better able to bring out the drama and intensity of the music as you... Read >>


Graham Fitch Learning pieces Beethoven

Jacques Ibert - Little White Donkey

Le petit âne blanc (The Little White Donkey) is the second piece from Jacquest Ibert’s set of ten pieces entitled Histoires and requires plenty of imagination to play it with the necessary colour and vibrancy. This video walkthrough and article shows how to use quarantining and other practice tools to... Read >>


Graham Fitch Learning pieces Ibert

Fantasie-Impromptu in C-Sharp Minor

(Op. 66)

A series of detailed video demonstrations on solving the various challenges posed by Chopin's Fantasie-Impromptu, with a special focus on the three-against-four polyrhythm.... Read >>


Graham Fitch Learning pieces Chopin

Invention in D Minor No. 4 (BWV 775)

Bach's Inventions (in two parts) and the Sinfonias (in three parts) were written for the Bach’s eldest son, Wilhelm Friedemann and are played throughout the world by intermediate players and concert artists alike. This video walkthrough and article shows how to use quarantining and other practice tools to approach two... Read >>


Graham Fitch Learning pieces Bach

Prelude in D Minor

BWV 935

Bach's Prelude in D minor, BWV 935, is a perfect introduction to the two-part Inventions, and a little gem in its own right. In this From the Ground Up edition, we work on developing an overall dynamic scheme for the piece, and on achieving rhythmic vitality through note grouping.... Read >>


Ken Johansen Learning pieces Bach

Rigaudon

Trinity College - Grade 2

A rigaudon is a lively French baroque dance. Telemann’s energetic example, set for Trinity Grade 2, contains plenty of springy rhythms and colour. In this video, I look at how to use simple five-finger patterns to develop the skills involved in playing the piece - forearm staccato and combined touches... Read >>


Graham Fitch Learning pieces Telemann

Fanfarinette and La Triomphante (from Suite in A minor)

Trinity College - Grade 8

Jean-Philippe Rameau was an important composer and theorist of the High Baroque. He wrote three books of very fine pieces for harpsichord - Fanfarinette and La Triomphante come from the Suite in A minor (third book), and are examples of character pieces with descriptive or fanciful titles typical of the... Read >>


Graham Fitch Learning pieces Rameau

No. 2 from Kinderstücke (Op. 72)

Trinity College - Grade 7

Mendelssohn wrote his set of six Children’s Pieces, op. 72 for his young relatives during his summer holiday to England in 1842. No. 2, an andante sostenuto in the key of E flat, close in spirit to the composer’s many Songs without Words, features a lyrical melody in the right... Read >>


Allegro molto (3rd movement from Sonata in C major, Hob. XVI:50)

Trinity College - Grade 7

This is the last movement of the so-called “English” Sonata in C, inspired by the powerful and resonant Broadwood pianos Haydn encountered on a visit to London in the 1790s. The music is full of humour and lightness of spirit, requiring a sense of comic timing, clarity of texture and... Read >>


Graham Fitch Learning pieces Haydn

Elgar - Andantino (First movement from Sonatina)

Trinity College - Grade 4

Here we find the first movement of a two-movement sonatina that Elgar wrote for his niece. It is song-like and gently expressive, calling for sensitivity in shaping phrases and timing larger melodic intervals. The Andantino demands careful listening in the balancing of the hands, the accompanying left hand, while quieter,... Read >>


Graham Fitch Learning pieces Elgar

Bruch - Moderato from Sechs Klavierstücke (Op. 12, No. 4)

ABRSM Grade 6 – B1

Max Bruch’s delightful Moderato from Sechs Klavierstücke (Op. 12, No. 4 ) is set for ABRSM Grade 6, list B. In this video I demonstrate in detail the techniques of quick cover, springboarding and selective landing to assist you in mastering the LH jumps so that you can focus on... Read >>


Graham Fitch Learning pieces Bruch

Partita No. 1 in B-flat Major (BWV 825)

This set of resources provides walkthroughs for movements from Bach's Partita No. 1 in B-flat Major (BWV 825) featured in the ABRSM examination syllabus. Menuets I and II (ABRSM Grade 6) make a beautiful contrasting pair of dances whereas the Gigue (ABRSM Grade 7) is unusual among Bach’s Gigues -... Read >>


Graham Fitch Learning pieces Bach

Allegro Assai (1st movement from Sonata in A major, Wq 55 no. 4)

Trinity College - Grade 8

CPE Bach’s Sonata in A is full of invention and makes a great alternative to the standard Haydn or Mozart repertoire. Full of contrasts in dynamics and texture, it demands a lot of technical control and precision. In this walkthrough, I look at how CPE Bach embellishes some of the... Read >>


Graham Fitch Learning pieces CPE Bach

Minuet in D major, K. 355

Trinity College - Grade 7

Mozart’s Minuet in D, K. 355 features chromaticism that is surprising even to our ears (imagine what it must have sounded like to the listener of the day!). The piece is conceived as an ensemble piece for string trio, and we need to have this sound in our ear as... Read >>


Graham Fitch Learning pieces WA Mozart

Allegro (from Fantasia no. 1 in D major)

Trinity College - Grade 6

Georg Philipp Telemann's Fantasia in D major, on Trinity’s Grade 6 alternative syllabus, is a worthy piece and a lot of fun to play. This video shows some of the principles involved in making decisions regarding dynamics, articulation, touch and expression and looks at several options for interpretation based on... Read >>


Graham Fitch Learning pieces Telemann

Camidge - Scherzando (Second movement from Sonata no. 1 in G major)

Trinity College - Grade 5

Matthew Camidge's Scherzando in G is a worthy example of Classical period music, a light-natured piece full of melodic embellishments, opportunities for variety in phrase shaping, articulation and dynamic colouring. In this video I demonstrate solutions for the fast repeated notes we find in the B section, and show how... Read >>


Graham Fitch Learning pieces Camidge

Waltz in A minor

Trinity College - Grade 4

Grieg’s Waltz in A minor is full of character and contrasts, and not without its challenges - especially concerning how to use the pedal. In this video I show how to organise the pedalling in order to make some of the joins possible without covering over Grieg’s slurs and staccato... Read >>


Graham Fitch Learning pieces Grieg

Diabelli - Moderato Cantabile (from Sonatina in F major, Op. 168 No. 1)

Trinity College - Grade 5 (Alternative)

The first movement (Moderato) of Diabelli’s appealing Sonatina in F is a model of sonata form in miniature, an ideal way to teach form and structure to the intermediate pianist. In this video I demonstrate the art of finger pedalling in the left hand alberti patterns and show how to... Read >>


Graham Fitch Learning pieces Diabelli

Intermezzo in B minor (Op. 119 No. 1)

Trinity College - Grade 8

In 1893, Brahms wrote his last work for the piano, a set of four piano pieces, op. 119. The Intermezzo in B minor is the first piece of the set. As a composition it is full of riches, arousing keen interest in composers and scholars (including Arnold Schoenberg) as they... Read >>


Graham Fitch Learning pieces Brahms

Reger - Versöhnung (Reconciliation) (No. 20 from Aus der Jugendzeit, op. 17)

Trinity College - Grade 6

Max Reger’s Versöhnung (Reconciliation) demands from the player a vivid imagination, the ability to tell a story in sound. This delightful late Romantic piece describes a character asking someone to be their friend again after a disagreement – pleading, commiserating and even dancing to win back their affection. In the... Read >>


Graham Fitch Learning pieces Reger

Sonata in G Major

Trinity College - Grade 3

Here is an opportunity for the developing player to explore various possibilities for touch and articulation. In this short sonata there are also several technical challenges to overcome, including jumps, rotary freedom, delicate grace notes.... Read >>


Graham Fitch Learning pieces Scarlatti

Prelude in C-sharp Minor

(Op. 3 No. 2)

A series of three videos exploring Rachmaninov’s famous Prelude in C-sharp Minor (Op. 3 No. 2) at the piano, with extensive practice tips to solve the technical issues, pedalling suggestions and thoughts on performance – including how to achieve a big sound effortlessly without banging or harshness.... Read >>


25 Easy and Progressive Etudes

(Op. 100)

Burgmüller’s 25 Easy and Progressive Etudes, Op. 100 have been a mainstay of elementary étude repertoire for many generations - and deservedly so. I cannot imagine any young pianist or elementary player who would not immediately engage with, or benefit from learning them. This series of videos provides walkthroughs of... Read >>


Waltz in E Minor (Op. Posth.)

Chopin’s brilliant Waltz in E minor is justly popular with pianists entering the advanced level. This From the Ground Up edition helps students to lay a solid musical and technical foundation for learning the piece efficiently and quickly, with particular attention given to using rhythmic practice to solve technical challenges.... Read >>


Ken Johansen Learning pieces Chopin

Allegretto (from The London Sketchbook, K. 15hh)

Trinity College - Grade 4

Mozart was 8 years old on a trip to London when he wrote this charming little Allegretto in F major in minuet-style, with a trio section in the minor. The video demonstrates how to use quarantine practice for difficult spots, and how to apply bar-by-bar chaining for secure learning. Various... Read >>


Graham Fitch Learning pieces WA Mozart

Intermezzo in A Minor (Op. 76 No. 7)

ABRSM Grade 8 – C2

Brahms’s sets of miniatures are among the best-loved shorter works for the piano. The Intermezzo in A minor, op. 76 no. 7, is currently on the ABRSM Grade VIII syllabus, and will pose several challenges for those who wish to master it. This walkthrough and Annotated Study Edition has a... Read >>


Graham Fitch Learning pieces Brahms

Lyric Pieces

(Op. 54)

Grieg wrote his famous Nocturne (Night Piece) in the summer of 1891 during his annual country retreat to the Norwegian mountains and fjords. Along with five other pieces, he included the Nocturne in Book V of his Lyric Pieces, Op. 54.... Read >>


Graham Fitch Learning pieces Grieg

*** (Album for the Young No. 30)

The 30th piece in Schumann’s Album for the Young is one of the composer’s most intimate and tender short pieces, full of harmonic and contrapuntal refinement. Although it is technically accessible to intermediate pianists, it is musically rewarding for more advanced players as well. This From the Ground Up edition... Read >>


Ken Johansen Learning pieces Schumann

Sonatina in G - Second Movement

This walkthrough of the second movement of Beethoven’s popular Sonatina in G will help students to assimilate essential elements of the Classical style: articulation, balance, ornamentation, and clear phrasing. The series of reduced scores provides students with a step-by-step approach to learning the piece, and makes it easier for teachers... Read >>


Ken Johansen Learning pieces Beethoven

Arietta

Lyric Pieces, Op. 12, No. 1

Edvard Grieg’s Arietta, the first of his many Lyric Pieces, is a miniature gem of great refinement and poetry. This From the Ground Up edition helps intermediate to advanced students to understand and communicate its expression, while learning some practice methods that can be applied to many other pieces as... Read >>


Ken Johansen Learning pieces Grieg

The Girl with the Flaxen Hair

La fille aux cheveux de lin (The Girl with the Flaxen Hair) is among Debussy’s best-loved works for the piano. Despite its apparent simplicity, it is deceptively difficult to bring off. This walkthrough with accompanying annotated study edition gives practical solutions to the numerous problems the pedalling in the work... Read >>


Graham Fitch Learning pieces Debussy

Sonatina in G - First Movement

This walkthrough of the first movement of Beethoven’s popular Sonatina in G will help students to assimilate essential elements of the Classical style: articulation, balance, ornamentation, and clear phrasing. The series of reduced scores provides students with a step-by-step approach to learning the piece, and makes it easier for teachers... Read >>


Ken Johansen Learning pieces Beethoven

Little Prelude in F

BWV 927 (From the Notebook for Wilhelm Friedmann Bach)

Bach’s lovely Little Prelude in F is a harmonic prelude, essentially an elaborated chord progression. In this article, the basic harmonic skeleton of the piece is gradually fleshed out, allowing students to understand its simple underlying structure, and to work systematically on its various layers.... Read >>


Ken Johansen Learning pieces Bach

Von fremden Ländern und Menschen

Kinderszenen, Op. 15, no. 1

Schumann’s Von fremden Länder und Menschen (Of Foreign Lands and People), the first piece of his Kinderszenen (Scenes of Childhood), is a poetic evocation of the dream-like world of children. In this article, the three strands of the music — melody, bass, and accompaniment — are studied individually before being... Read >>


Ken Johansen Learning pieces Schumann

Nocturne in E-flat

Op. 9, no. 2

Frédéric Chopin’s Nocturne in E-flat Op. 9 No. 2, has long been a favourite of both pianists and audiences with it's richly-ornamented melody, supported by exquisite harmonies in the left hand. This From the Ground Up walk-through provides a detailed guide to learning this piece efficiently and with understanding and... Read >>


Ken Johansen Learning pieces Chopin

From the Ground Up

From the Ground Up is a series devoted to learning individual pieces using outlines and reduced scores that help you to practise more effectively, memorize more consciously, and interpret music more creatively.... Read >>


Ken Johansen Learning pieces

Sostenuto in E flat

ABRSM Grade 5 – B1

Chopin's Sostenuto in E flat or Waltz in E flat was discovered as recently as 1941, by the Director of the Paris Conservatoire, Dr. Jacques Chailley. There are precious few works of Chopin that are suitable for the intermediate level pianist, so Grade V candidates will be extremely happy to... Read >>


Graham Fitch Learning pieces Chopin

Nocturne in C-sharp Minor

Chopin wrote the Nocturne in C-sharp minor, op. posth. in 1830, but it was only published in 1870. He dedicated the work to his sister, Ludwika “as an exercise before beginning the study of my second Concerto". This series of articles provides a comprehensive walkthrough and detailed practice worksheets for... Read >>


Graham Fitch Learning pieces Chopin

Solfeggietto in C Minor

H220 Wq177:2

The term “solfeggietto” means an exercise, or little study. This much-loved little piece is a study in evenness of tempo and touch, but it is also a study in composition (how a piece of music may be constructed from the simplest of ideas). This series of videos provides an introduction... Read >>


Graham Fitch Learning pieces CPE Bach

Fantasy in D Minor K397

This video provides a section by section waltkthrough of Mozart's Fantasy in D Minor K397 (sometimes referred to as Fantasia).... Read >>


Graham Fitch Learning pieces WA Mozart

Two Short Pieces

This series features two popular short pieces by William Alwyn, The Sun is Setting and The Sea is Angry which are both ideal for the intermediate level.... Read >>


The Merry Farmer

ABRSM Grade 4 – B2

Schumann’s piano music is a joy to play – it is full of inspiration, fantastic contrasts in mood and character as well as beautiful melodies and breathtakingly beautiful harmonies. This series of articles provides notes outlining how to approach learning The Merry Farmer, Returning from Work from the Album for... Read >>


Graham Fitch Learning pieces Schumann

Sonatina in G

ABRSM Grade 3 – A1

Handel's Sonatina in G is part of a new series on the ABRSM syllabus designed for youngsters, or elementary players. This series of articles provides a step-by-step (or phrase-by-phrase) approach to learning the piece thoroughly and securely, building a solid foundation for performance in an exam, or if you are... Read >>


Graham Fitch Learning pieces Handel

Aria in F

ABRSM Grade 1 – A1

JC Bach's Aria in F is part of a new series on the ABRSM syllabus designed for youngsters, or elementary players. This series of articles provides a step-by-step (or phrase-by-phrase) approach to learning the piece thoroughly and securely, building a solid foundation for performance in an exam, or if you... Read >>


Graham Fitch Learning pieces JC Bach

A Crash Course in Music Theory

This series provides a “crash course” in practical theory for pianists. It covers traditional topics such as harmony and counter point through examples and exercises which will improve your understanding of music and your performance practice.... Read >>


Mazurkas

This section contains walk-throughs and lessons on Chopin's Mazurkas, starting with the Mazurka in A Minor, Op. 17, No. 4.... Read >>


Graham Fitch Learning pieces Chopin

Impromptus D899 (Op. 90)

This section contains walk-throughs and lessons on Schubert’s Impromptus Op 90, starting with No. 2 in E-Flat Major.... Read >>


Graham Fitch Learning pieces Schubert

The Well-Tempered Clavier – Part 1

This section contains walk-throughs and lessons on Preludes and Fugues from Book I of J.S. Bach's Well-Tempered Clavier.... Read >>


Graham Fitch Learning pieces Bach

Sonatine

Ravel wrote the first movement of the Sonatine in 1903 for a magazine competition run by a magazine but wasn't awarded the prize as he was the only entrant and had exceeded the length restriction! Fortunately for posterity, Ravel soon added a second and a third movement in 1905 and... Read >>


Graham Fitch Learning pieces Ravel