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Many piano students will know Stephen Heller becuase of the many Etudes he wrote. These pieces are generally considered to be also interesting musically, as opposed to the Etudes by Czerny, which are mainly interesting for technical reasons. He only composed short pieces for the piano, like Tarantellas, Nocturnes, Ballads, Songs without Words, Variations, Waltzes and of course the Etudes.
Heller took lessons with Czerny, and later with Anton Halm, who also introduced him to Schubert and Beethoven. At an age of 15 years Stephen made concert tours with his father. He settles in Paris in 1838, where he gets to know Berlioz, Chopin, Liszt, and many others. Robert Schumann highly esteemed his piano works, but it was still to take some time before he was valued.
Heller is considered a French composer, but his works have a romantic German en Bohemian sound.