Of the 400 compositions which make up Martinu's oeuvre, 97 are dedicated to solo piano. The 50th anniversary of the Czech composer's death falls in 2009, and is the perfect occasion to present a small selection of his works in an anthology.
Martinu's music shows many influences and styles: the folk music of his Bohemian-Moravian home country, (neo-) Impressionist impressions of his French fellow composers Debussy and Ravel, modern influences of Stravinsky, the Group de Six but also of jazz music. His style is characterised by elaborate rhythms, pushing melodies as well as harmonies which mainly remain in the tonal space and are enriched with tonal sharpening and polytonality.
The compiled pieces, composed between 1913 and 1936, give an overview of the stylistic variety of Martinu's tonal language, forming a multi-faceted overall picture. The pieces are not arranged in chronological order but in order of increasing difficulty.