Central Illinois Dueling Pianos, while based out of Peoria, IL employs professional dueling pianos players from all around the Midwest. Primarily performing in venues within a 90 mile radius of Peoria, CIDP offers the best of both worlds with our performances - you get a locally produced show but with players from a national stage.

Dueling piano's earliest roots are from the late 1890s, when ragtime piano players really would duel to see who could play faster.

Today's format originated at Pat O'Brien's bar on Bourbon Street in New Orleans. Two piano players would take turns playing songs requested by the audience, who wrote their picks on cocktail napkins.

The format became even more common when bars and clubs all over the country started incorporating popular music and involving the audience.

Central Illinois Dueling Pianos started producing dueling shows in late February 2005 at The Waterhouse in Peoria under the name - Howlin' on Water...Dueling Pianos.

Starting in September of 2005, The Howlin' on Water show played every Friday night at the Waterhouse and expanded to play every Saturday at Maggie Miley's in Normal, IL until December 2006.

Due to the demand for private parties at The Waterhouse, starting in January 2007 Central Illinois Dueling Pianos hit the road and now plays exclusively private shows all over Illinois and public performances about once a month back at The Waterhouse.

The show greatly depends on its audience - the song requests and the level of participation can make or break a show. In fact, a show probably depends just as much on the audience as the performers. If you have an older crowd, you'll hear oldies, classics, Motown tunes. A younger crowd might request Lady Gaga or Outkast.

This is what makes dueling pianos such a great choice for private parties too as it can appeal to any crowd whether you are 8 or 80. You choose the songs, so it is truly your show!