Portrait of Peter Paul Koprowski thumbtack

Early Piano Pieces: Piano Sketches

written between: 1958-1964

By 1964 I had about 40 compositions, most of them for the piano. I do not call them my "school works", as I wasn't receiving any composition lessons at the time. Rather, I refer to them as my "kiddy" pieces. I was self-taught in those years - read books on harmony and counterpoint, listened to music, and studied the scores.

Yet, when I revisited some of these works recently, (many were justly destroyed over the years, some were lost), I recognized that they were more than just exercises in composition.

They had a shape and were consistent in their harmonic language. They showed basic resemblance to my favourite music at the time, compositions that I played or, more often, works that I wished I could play. I resolved to bring some of these works before the public.

This set consists of Scherzando (1958), Three Preludes (1959), Two Mazurkas (1961), and Piano Sketches (1964).

written: 1964 Duration: 12 minutes

For many years Piano Sketches remained my last work for piano solo.
By 1964, at the age of seventeen, I was already preoccupied with chamber and orchestral compositions. A year earlier, in 1963, came the orchestral In Memoriam Karol Szymanowski.
By 1967 I already had my String Quartet, String Trio, and several other works for various instrumental combinations.

1964 was a transitional year. I was experimenting with different colours, harmonies, rhythms and textures. Following the completion of the Piano Sketches, I also commenced my first composition lessons.

The work is a collection of school exercises written within the context of a course in contemporary techniques. It is in three parts.
The first one, played attacca, consists of Intrada, Arietta, and Imitations. The second, Chorale, stands alone. The third part is a Prelude and Fugue.