My brother is entering a competition, which the final round requires a performance of a Piano Concerto of any era. My brother is looking for an emotional and powerful piece. I recommended a late Romantic piece for him. He has found Rachmaninoff's Piano Concerto No.2 and Addinsell's Warsaw Concerto exceptionally interesting, the later in particular. The problem, however, is that even though Warsaw Concerto does feature a piano as a soloist, we are unsure whether it is a Piano Concerto or not.


P.S. If any of you happens to know a great Piano Concerto of similar style, please do tell me.


3 Answers 3


As far as I know there has never been (and probably never will be) a legally binding definition of "piano concerto", or any similar musical term like "sonata", "symphony", etc.

But a competition with a "piano concerto" as the final round would usually mean "a concerto that is part of the standard classical repertoire". Even if a 10-minute excerpt from a film score is "accepted", it will probably meet with some negative prejudice from the judging panel.

Googling for "piano concerto repertoire" will show you what professional pianists think a concerto is.


Yes, the "Warsaw Concerto" is a piano concerto, and I have heard of high school students playing it as a graduation piece. It is very good for that purpose because it is short and sounds much more difficult to play than it actually is. For the same reasons, it is not likely to impress competition judges.

It is very close to Edvard Grieg's piano concerto in style.


I'd vote no. Comparing it to other piano concertos, it stands out apart. Usually piano concertos have three movements - fast, slow, fast and follow a certain form: the sonata form.


The Warsaw Concerto, on the other hand, is a short piece, actually program music.

Common features are the arrangement for solo piano and orchestra, but in terms of form a piano concerto is more complex. Like a bungalow compared to a three-story apartment building.

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