An article by pianist Susan Tomes appeared in yesterday's Guardian on the difficulties faced by pianists in duo partnerships. A couple of quotes from the article:
The role of pianists working with singers is a special case. Here, pianists are almost always referred to as "accompanists", and many have made their peace with that word. Personally, I find it insufficient; "accompanist" does not indicate what instrument is being played. In this respect the label is probably unique in the world of music, where everyone else is a trumpeter, drummer, clarinettist, guitarist, whatever. "Accompanist" merely tells you that someone else is more important.
Thank you, Susan. Your voice will add steam to the movement afloat to do away with that word.
Americans now use the phrase "collaborative pianist" instead of "accompanist". It's a bit of a mouthful, but a step in the right direction - although why not simply pianist?
There will be plenty of music critics who are hearing the words "collaborative pianist" for the first time in this article. And yes, it's quite a mouthful. How about CP for short?
Proper and improper ways to label pianists in ensemble
What is Collaborative Piano?