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10 Easy Piano Pieces

The Ten Easy Piano Pieces, Sz.39, were composed in 1908 and premiered and published the next year. This set, together with the Mikrokosmos and the two books of 'For Children' is an example of Bartok's supreme skill in writing pedagogical music that is easy and accessible yet musically rewarding. The 10 pieces are prefaced with a 'Dedication' which makes use of the 'Steffi Geyer leitmotif', a theme which Bartok also uses in other compositions. Steffi Geyer was a Austrian violinist whom Bartok had been infatuated with as a young man.

Some of these pieces are adaptations of existing Hungarian folk melodies, some are original compositions. It is a tribute to Bartok's genius and his total assimilation of the idiom, that the difference can not be noticed except perhaps in the Dedication. 'Evening in Transylvania' (one of the original themes) and 'Bear Dance' were orchestrated in 1931 and included as part of the orchestral suite 'Hungarian Sketches'.

Complete recording by Chris Breemer

Bartok - 10 Easy Pieces, Sz. 39 (1908)
Recorded august 1, 2010

1 Peasant Song0:49
2 Painful struggle1:27
3 Slovak young men's dance0:51
4 Sostenuto1:29
5 Evening in Transylvania2:23
6 Hungarian folk song0:44
7 Dawn1:40
8 Folk song1:23
9 Finger study1:16
10 Bear dance1:57