In this volume are to be found many small but pleasing piano pieces by the 19th-century composer Stephen Heller. The majority are of only medium difficulty, but their sound always has a particular charm. In 1853 Heller wrote to his publisher that he “had not sought to write many words” here, but wanted to suggest something “substantial and meaningful” in “just a few strokes”. Our volume provides valuable insights into Heller’s artistic development and is entirely devoted to the “character piece”, a form that comprises the major part of his compositional output. Examples include “Die kleine Bettlerin” [The little beggar-girl], “Nach erquickender Rast” [After a refreshing rest] and “Weinendes Kind” [Crying child] – scenes that conjure up and express a particular mood. As Ursula Kersten writes in her preface, Heller’s music already makes one think of Impressionism, and repays the effort involved in getting to know the composer of this volume more closely.