The Chopin nocturnes constitute 21 short pieces for solo piano written by Frédéric Chopin between 1827 and 1846. They are generally considered among the finest short solo works for the instrument and hold an important place in contemporary concert repertoire. Although Chopin did not invent the nocturne, he popularized and expanded on it, building on the form developed by Irish composer John Field.
This is one of Chopin's most popular works, and it is well known around the world. He composed it in 1842 and dedicated it to Monsieur Auguste Leo. The piece requires exceptional pianistic skills and requires virtuosity to be played at an appropriate level of quality. It is also sometimes referred to as the Drum Polonaise. Although the piece is labeled as a polonaise, it has little to do with the typical polonaise style. It presents two sections with a polonaise rhythm, but most of it has no particular polonaise attribute. It has been said that Chopin had composed the piece having a free and powerful Poland in mind, which may have led him to label it as a polonaise. Another possibility is that the Heroic Polonaise is closely related to the Polonaise in A Major, Op. 40 No. 1, known as the Military Polonaise, which, unlike the Heroic, is a true polonaise.
Part of the NCPA's celebration of the 200th anniversary of Liszt's birth