Lisa Bergman’s Top 5 Favorite Piano Concertos

Classical KING FM’s Great Concertos Series runs through Sunday, June 5.


Pianist Lisa Bergman, host of Explore Music and middays on KING FM (10 AM-1 PM Mon.-Sat. and 11 AM-1 PM Sun.), shares her most beloved works for piano and orchestra.

Emil von Sauer: Piano Concerto No. 1 in E minor

Lisa says: Passionate and soulful – with an amazing blend of flavors – a touch of Massenet, a soupçon of Chopin, and dashes of Grieg, Franck and Wagner…it is simply indescribably beautiful.


Cesar Franck: Symphonic Variations

Lisa says: A veritable showcase of mood changes – one theme transformed into a progression of emotion and changes of keys – all the while is as if we are eavesdropping on an intimate and sometimes boisterous conversation between pianist and orchestra…


Maurice Ravel: Concerto for the Left Hand

Lisa says: Composed for a famed pianist, Paul Wittgenstein, who lost his right arm in combat in World War I fighting on the Russian Front, yet performed by many a pianist with both hands who must struggle mightily to resist helping the left hand from time to time with the idle right hand – but no cheating is allowed!


Edvard Grieg: Piano Concerto in A minor

Lisa says: Composed when he was but 25 years old, brought him international recognition before any other Norwegian composer!   This concerto has become a one-hit wonder as one of the most often performed piano concerti in the repertoire – and rightfully so!   Perhaps this is why Grieg composed only one?


Manuel de Falla: Nights in the Gardens of Spain

Lisa says: An atmospheric masterpiece, complete with the musical scents of Andalusia — jasmine and citrus, a trickling of fountains, castanets and warm breezes.