This ballade from Grieg’s set of Lyric Pieces requires the same emotional maturity that a poem of the same deep mournfulness would convey. To be played at a slow tempo, this piece has a thick chord texture and many possible dynamic contrasts. Students will encounter octaves and sections where varying depths of pedal will add to the expressivity of the piece. Full of strong cadences and extensive use of rhythmic patterns, this piece builds up to a clear, powerful climax, only to end with a final gentle chord.
Caroline Krause, undergraduate piano major, The University of Iowa