Da Moszt Difficult Piano Concs

Per some dude on a talkclassical thread (for reference: Piano Concertos Ranked by Difficulty | Classical Music Forum

Extraordinarily Difficult
Sorabji Concerto per suonare da me solo
Sorabji Concertos
Busoni Concerto
Messiaen Des Canyons aux Étoiles
Barber Concerto
Alkan Solo Concerto
Carter Concerto
Ives Emerson Concerto
Ginastera Concerto No.1
Rautavaara Concerto No.1
Lutoslawski Concerto
Ligeti Concerto
Rautavaara Concerto No.2
Corigliano Concerto
Cage Concert for Piano and Orchestra

Ridiculously Difficult:
Ginastera Concerto No.2
Bartok Concerto No. 2
Prokofiev Concerto No.2
Xenakis Palimpsest
Babbitt Concerto
Bartok Concerto No.1
Messiaen Oiseaux Exotiques
Bortkiewicz Concerto No.2
Strauss Burlesque
Rachmaninov Concerto No.3
Busoni Indian Fantasy
Tveitt Aurora Borealis
Scriabin Prometheus or the Poem of Fire
Perle Piano Concerto No. 1
Brahms Concerto No.2
Korngold Left Hand Concerto
Perle Piano Concerto No. 2
Rozycki Concerto No.1
Kapustin Concerto No.6
Ravel Left Hand Concerto

Extremely Difficult:
Tchaikovsky Concerto No.1
Marx Concerto
Atterberg Concerto
Ireland Concerto
Kapustin Concerto No.5
Rachmaninov Concerto No.1
Lyapunov Concerto No.1
Rubinstein Piano Concertos
Penderecki Concerto
Lyapunov Concerto No.2
Medtner Concerto No.1
Medtner Concerto No.3
Bortkiewicz Concerto No.3
Medtner Concerto No.2
Bliss Piano Concerto
Brahms Concerto No.1
Rachmaninov Concerto No. 4
Schoenberg Concerto
Liebermann Concerto No.2
Liebermann Piano Concerto No.1
Vaughan-Williams Concerto
Liszt Totentanz
Bortkiewicz Concerto No.1
Moszkowski Piano Concerto No.2

Very Difficult
Tchaikovsky Concerto No.2
Rimsky-Korsakov Concerto
Ravel Concerto in G
Tchaikovsky Concerto No.3
Prokofiev Concerto No.3
Chen Er Huang
Macdowell Piano Concerto No.1
Macdowell Piano Concerto No.2
Rachmaninov Rhapsody on a Theme by Paganini
Kapustin Concerto No.4
Schnittke Piano Concerto
Jaëll Concerto No.1
Stravinsky Concerto for Piano and Winds
Liszt Concerto No.2
Debussy Fantasy for Piano and Orchestra
Rautavaara Concerto No.3
Prokofiev Concerto No. 4
Scriabin Concerto
Xinghai Yellow River Concerto
Rachmaninov Concerto No.2
Stenhammar Piano Concerto
Franck Variations
Liszt Concerto No.1
Chopin Concerto No.2
Bronsart Concerto
Chopin Concerto No.1
Kapustin Concerto No.3
Reinecke Concerto No.1
Moszkowski Piano Concerto No.1
Britten Diversions for Piano Left Hand and Orchestra
Reinecke Concerto No.2
Prokofiev Concerto No. 5
Khachaturian Piano Concerto
Bartok Concerto No.3
Alkan 3 Concerti da Camera
Balakirev Piano Concerto
Schumann Concerto in A Minor

Saint-Saens Concerto No.3
Beethoven Concerto No.4
Hummel Concerto No.2
Kapustin Concerto No.2
Adams Century Rolls
Beethoven Concerto No.5
Poulenc Concerto
Saint-Saens Concerto No. 2
Mendelssohn Concerto No.2
Moscheles Concertos
Saint-Saens Concerto No.5
Massanet Concerto
Dvorak Piano Concerto
Saint-Saens Concerto No.4
Beethoven Concerto No.3
Mozart Concerto No.20
Mendelssohn Piano Concerto
Weber Konzertstück for Piano and Orchestra
Arensky Concerto
Gershwin Rhapsody in Blue
Prokofiev Concerto No.1
Chopin Andante Spinato et Grande Polonaise Brillante
Gershwin Concerto in F
Grieg Concerto
Mozart Concerto No.27
Mozart Concerto No.15
Mozart Concerto No.17
Busoni Early Concerto
Mozart Concerto No.22
Mozart Concerto No.25
Janacek Concertino
Yoshimatsu Memo Flora
George Gershwin Variations on the theme of “I Got Rhythm”
Shostakovich Concerto No.1

Less Difficult:
Shostakovich Concerto No.2
Ustvolskaya Concerto
Nyman “The Piano Concerto”
Scott Early One Morning
Mozart Concerto No.21
Mozart Concerto No.23
Mozart Concerto No.16
Mozart Concerto No.26
Mozart Concerto No.19
Haydn Concerto No.11
Beethoven Concerto No. 2
Kabalevsky Piano Concerto No.2
Emerson Piano Concerto No.1
Kabalevsky Piano Concerto No.1
Beethoven Concerto No. 1
Kabalevsky Piano Concerto No.3

I think at some point, rankings become pointless… once da TECH is built up enough, most of these will be “playable” by many, many people.

That being said, even learning the notes of certain fuckers like da mammoth BUZ concerto, or da Prok 2, Prok 3 n Rach 3 brain rapists, is a health hazard

Smaller concs like Rach Paganini and Liszt are bitchy too, the texture leaves Da 88 really exposed and they’re so short that you got few chances to redeem yourself after a best fuckup.

And den we haff the super standard stuff like any Beethoven or one of Brahms concs… no matter how you do it, someone will already have a rec they prefer (a secondary source of knowledge, at best) and they will objectify your playing like da TRUMOFO to objectifies shaved pussy pics or bassets on Instagram: nothing is ever satisfactory.


Would about something completely atonal? I imagine that that’s excruciatingly difficult to learn for many mofos.

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Da Henselt conspicuous by its absence. It really is demanding. I don’t actually think the Liapunov 2 is super difficult: I had it half learnt at one point but that was way in the past…

Absolutely. There are so many layers to “difficulty” that it is hard to rank anything objectively

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Per this list, the most difficult concertos in the standard rep are:

Bartok Concerto No. 2
Prokofiev Concerto No.2
Bartok Concerto No.1
Strauss Burlesque
Rachmaninov Concerto No.3
Brahms Concerto No.2
Ravel Left Hand Concerto


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