A collection of dark and moody pieces for solo piano. Easy to Advanced Level
House of the Rising Sun
Like many classic folk ballads, the authorship of "The House of the Rising Sun" is uncertain. Musicologists say that it is based on the tradition of broadside ballads such as The Unfortunate Rake of the 18th century and that English emigrants took the song to America where it was adapted to its later New Orleans setting. Alan Price of The Animals has even claimed that the song was originally a sixteenth-century English folk song about a Soho brothel.
With more than a touch of graveyard lugubriousness, this piece is probably the most famous of all funeral marches. It has been used at the funerals of politicians such as John F Kennedy and Winston Churchill as well as appearing many times in popular culture.
Mussorgsky's Night on a the Bare Mountain is a dramatic and exciting depiction of a witches' sabbath. One of the most famous works in the classical repertoire it was also used to great effect in Walt Disney's 'Fantasia.'
Berlioz - Dies Irae theme from Symphonie Fantastique (Theme from Stanley Kubricks The Shining)
Another piece that might have you 'witching' you were somewhere else... It is the opening of the last movement of Berlioz's Symphonie Fantastique, a depiction of a witches' sabbath though the medium of a fevered dream. If this horror is not enough, the main theme is an old melody used to set the words 'Dies Irae' ('Day of Wrath') used as part of a Requiem Mass (Mass for the Dead).