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#1 Jan 29, 2008
You're right, Jacob, it's a silly question but nonetheless fun to play around with and you have chosen excellently. For that matter, the whole body of Chopin's work might be considered the best ever for piano.
But for a single piece, I nominate Lizt's Sonata in B Minor (played by Alfred Brendel). It has razzle dazzle, it has seemingly a titantic struggle between the forces of good and evil (or 2 such extremes), it has a fugue and counterpoint, its beauty is breathtaking.
#2 Feb 4, 2008
The greatest - a task to nominate almost as hard as writing a piece in the first place. However if pressed, I would have to go for Beethoven's Diabelli Variations. This piece has everything from ferocity to tenderness, from drama to poignancy, and it makes you think; the final variations contain wonder and the weight of human emotions. Food for the intellect and the soul. A recording to last for many lifetimes - that by Maurizio Pollini.
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