Performing as a Pianist in London
My name is Eugene Portman and a good proportion of my work as a pianist comes from London. With its huge population London is the UK’s largest city and has a vast number of venues. In fact, although I’ve performed in many of them, I’ve only just scratched the surface. Almost every week I find myself performing at a hotel or pub I’ve never been to before. There are many great pianists in London and Middlesex, but the demand for them seems to exceed the number of quality musicians available.
I perform for many different types of events including private parties and corporate events. However, it is usually weddings that bring me to London as a pianist and I can provide music for every part of the wedding day.
Famous Pianists and London
Many famous pianists came from London and the Middlesex areas including two of my favourites George Shearing and Ralph Sharon. George Shearing was born in Battersea, London, but his career as a pianist reached dizzying heights when he went to America. Another great pianist, Ralph Sharon was also born in London and also made his fortune in the States. His exquisite piano playing can be heard on many Tony Bennett recordings his musical partnership with Tony lasted over 40 years.
Not everyone wants to marry in a rural setting and some cities are very popular for weddings. London weddings provide me with work as a classical pianist for ceremonies, but they also give me the opportunity to play other styles of music for the rest of the day.
To be successful as a wedding pianist I have to be able to play music from many different genres. These genres include pop, rock, Latin, classical, blues, jazz, and sing-along. As well as this, I am always willing to learn any specific pieces that you may require.
My repertoire ranges from Bach to Bacharach and Beatles to Adele, but my main passion is music from the jazz era. The music I play covers all the old great jazz standards as performed by Ella Fitzgerald, Louis Armstrong, and Duke Ellington. Also, my pianistic style has evolved through listening to pianists like Dudley Moore, Erroll Garner, Ralph Sharon, and George Shearing.
My Work as a Sing-along Pianist in London
A new trend has led to me being booked as a sing-along pianist in the London area. In fact, this is really taking over from all my other work. When I perform at sing-along events I dress like an old fashioned Cockney pianist with a Bowler hat, waistcoat, pocket watch, grandad shirt, etc. I can also provide song sheets to make your event into a good old ‘cockney knees-up’.
Please visit the sing-a-long page for more information about this. Alternatively, visit my other website at www.uksingalongpianist.co.uk and find out when I am next playing the piano for a public event in London.
Also, please don’t just stay on this page. The rest of the site contains loads of different styles of piano music and does explain the different services that I can offer.
To hear examples of the different styles of music that I play, please visit the following pages:
If you would like help with your ceremony music then please visit the ceremony music page.
Please note that I am always willing to learn any requests that you may have.
Here are some of London’s many venues I’ve visited as a pianist:
The Arts Club, 40 Dover Street, London
Musicians have two very good pianos at there disposal at this very famous venue. They have a gtrand piano upstairs and a nice upright downstairs. I’ve been hired as a pianist to play at many events in the Arts Club and I always look forward to my next visit.
Dartmouth House, 37 Charles Street, London
They have a Daneman grand piano upstairs which is usually kept in good condition. Out of all the venues in London, Dartmouth house is the one that I visit the most frequently.
Trafalgar Tavern, Park Row, Greenwich, London
They have a Chang grand piano on site, but I often have to take a digital piano with me so that I can play in the bar area.
Park Inn Heathrow, Bath Road, West Drayton, Middlesex
. I’ve performed here on a few occasions, but I have always had to take my own instrument with me. I don’t think that there is a piano in any part of the building
Renaissance London Heathrow Hotel, Bath Rd, Heathrow, Hounslow, Middlesex
Like the above, I’ve always taken a digital piano with me. To the best of my knowledge, I don’t think that they own a piano.
Eltham Palace, Eltham
This is a lovely venue and they have quite a nice piano too.
St James Court Hotel, 54 Buckingham Gate, London
I used to be the resident pianist at this hotel, so it brings back many memories when I visit this venue.
Pitzhanger Manor House, Walpole Park, Mattock Lane, London
I used to play at this venue quite a lot and the piano was always very nice. Unfortunately I haven’t been able to do the last few dates that I’ve been given for this venue.
The Landmark Hotel, 222 Marylebone Road, London
The piano I played here on the last occasion was a nice Kawai grand. I don’t know whether it belonged to the hotel or was just hired in for me.
Four Seasons Hotel, Hamilton Place, Park Lane, London
I know for a fact that this venue has more than one piano, but I have only played on the grand piano on the very top floor. I have worked here on a number of occasions and I have met quite a lot of interesting people while doing so. The hotel is considered by many to be the finest in London.
Dulwich College, Dulwich Common
This venue has three pianos, but the best one is definitely the Yamaha grand in the Old Library where ceremonies usually take place. Dulwich College probably provides more pianists with work than any other London venue.
Burgh House, New End Square, Hampstead, London
This is a pianist’s paradise. They have a lovely piano that is just dying to be played and I just wish I could play there more often than I do.
Royal Institute Of British Architects, 66 Portland Place, London
They have a lovely piano upstairs and it is a real pleasure to play. I was booked as a pianist to play there recently and as always, it was in beautiful condition.
I travel all over London as a pianist. Here is a list of the areas I cover:
- East Finchley
- East Ham
- Forest Gate
- Forest Hill
- Friern Barnet
- Golders Green
- West Norwood
- Winchmore Hill
- Wood Green
- Bethnal Green
- Camden Town
- City of London
- Crouch End
- East Dulwich
- Herne Hill
- Isle of Dogs
- Kingston upon Thames
- Maida Vale
- Manor Park
- Mile End
- Mill Hill
- Muswell Hill
- New Addington
- New Cross
- North Finchley
- Notting Hill
- Palmers Green
- Primrose HIll
- Regent’s Park
- Shepherd’s Bush
- South Ockendon
- South Woodford
- St John’s Wood
- St. Pancras
- Stoke Newington
- The Borough
- Tufnell Park
- West Brompton
- West Ham