Top Ten Classical Pieces to Listen to First

Composers like Karl von Weber or Rachmaninoff probably do not fit your taste if you have not been into classical music yet. Not surprisingly, the classical pieces most accessible for large audiences are usually the most famous.

This list reflects which classical pieces should one listen to who is used to pop music, classic rock or basically any genre but classical and metal (there is another list Heaviest Classical Pieces for that purpose).

Also note that this list is about which classical pieces to listen, not to play first.

The Top Ten

1 Hungarian Dance No. 5 - Johannes Brahms

This piece is so catchy that it can hardly be considered classical music despite the instruments. Maybe it could even be played on a non-classical radio station. - Alkadikce

Great ideas. I would suggest more waltzes because they are accessible:
Voices Of Spring Waltz - Johann Strauss II
Waltz of the Flowers - Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky
On the Beautiful Blue Danube, Op. 314 - Johann Strauss II
Sleeping Beauty Waltz - Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Jazz Suite No. 2: VI. Waltz 2 - Dmitri Shostakovich
Vienna Blood Waltz - Johann Strauss II
Roses from the South Waltz - Johann Strauss II
Waves of the Danube - Iosif Ivanovici - Metal_Treasure

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2 Ride of the Valkyries - Richard Wagner

Appears in some movies - Alkadikce

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3 Rhapsody in Blue - George Gershwin

Possibly the best introduction to 20th century classical music.

Note: I am curious if someone can tell me what is on this picture, and why is it connected to this piece. - Alkadikce

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4 Tempo di Mazurka - Edvard Grieg

Not a very well known piece but I like it better than Hall of the Mountain King and Morning Mood, because those two are very repetitive - Alkadikce

5 Habanera - Georges Bizet

No surprise it gets the most time on the radio out of all operas (as I experience) - Alkadikce

Very good idea this one - Metal_Treasure

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6 Symphony No.45 "Farewell" - Joseph Haydn

Maybe Schubert's symphonies are more likeable for a person who was never into classical, but this has more emotion - Alkadikce

7 Walnut Cracker - Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky

Especially Trepak, March and Flower Waltz. - Alkadikce

8 The Magic Flute - W. A. Mozart

Turkish March - Metal_Treasure

9 Golliwog's Cake-Walk - Claude Debussy

I think this piano piece would make a great ringtone - Alkadikce

10 Ciacona in D minor - Johann Pachelbel

Of course Canon in D would be the obvious pick but imagine playing this piece at Christmas night on full volume! - Alkadikce

The Contenders

11 Claire de Lune - Claude Debussy UListen to Sample
12 Sereande - Johann Pachelbel
13 Serenade - Johann Pachelbel
14 Adagio for Strings - Samuel Barber UListen to Sample
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