The Magic of Dueling Piano Shows

Ever been invited to a dueling piano show and not known exactly what to expect? Looking for new ways to shake off the week? Need to entertain out-of-town visitors? Here’s what you should know about dueling piano performances—and why you should check one out soon.

The Concept Behind Dueling Piano Shows

Traditionally, a dueling piano show involves two grand pianos on a stage and two pianists who take turns playing and singing audience-requested songs. The players exchange banter and comedic commentary, putting on a high-energy impromptu show designed to engage audience members as much as possible. These performances can take place in any spacious lounge, restaurant, bar, cruise ship, or wedding reception—anywhere with a stage and a reason for music, dancing, and laughter.

Dueling Piano History

The entertainment form of dueling pianos originated in the late 1890s, when ragtime piano players would actually compete to see who was the most skilled. The first dedicated dueling piano bar opened in New Orleans in 1933, where audience members would write their requests on cocktail napkins. In 1986, the form was reinvented to include contemporary rock and roll music, and it was around this time that players began introducing the more comedic elements of the show. Today, there are over 200 dueling piano bars in the US.

Reasons To See a Dueling Piano Show

If you’ve never been to a dueling piano show, you definitely should, as it’s a completely unique form of American entertainment. It’s also an excellent option if you:

  • Need to shake up your weekend or entertainment routine
  • Are looking for a show that will delight multiple generations in your party
  • Want to see an affordable live music performance
  • Enjoy interactive entertainment
  • Appreciate easy, natural ways to strike up conversations with new people
  • Could use a fresh date night idea
  • Need a bachelor or bachelorette party idea
  • Love the piano or appreciate skilled musician performers

See Dueling Piano Shows at Main Street Crossing

If you’re in need of some fresh, lively entertainment, check out our regular dueling piano performances by the JoiLux Band at Main Street Crossing.

Main Street Crossing in Tomball, Texas is one of the best small music venues in the Houston metro area. This unique nonprofit in a historical venue hosts country, Americana, folk, blues, and other types of music artists in an intimate setting: the furthest seat is only 45 feet from the stage. MSC also offers food, beverages, table service, and community seating, making it easier to interact with fellow concertgoers and even performing artists. Parking is convenient and stress-free.

Main Street Crossing additionally functions as a multi-use venue for church services, concerts, and more located in Tomball. Check out our event calendar and enjoy entertainment in support of good causes!