In 1829, he continued his law studies in Heidelberg, where he became a lifelong member of Corps Saxo-Borussia Heidelberg. Clara Schumann - Variations on a theme of Robert Schumann for piano in F sharp minor, Op 20: 01:05: Johannes Brahms - Symphony No 2 in D, Op 73: 00:45: Clara Schumann - Piano Concerto in A minor, Op 7: 00:31: Johannes Brahms - Tragic Overture, Op 81: 00:26: Emily Hall - Fields of Snow: 00:18: Giuseppe Martucci - Notturno in G flat major, Op. 70, Three Romances for oboe and piano, Op. Liszt also said: "It is a noble work, worthy of Beethoven, whose career, by the way, it is supposed to represent". His teacher, Friedrich Wieck, a German pianist, had assured him that he could become the finest pianist in Europe, but a hand injury ended this dream. Schumann intended to use proceeds from sales of the work toward the construction of a monument to Beethoven, who had died in 1827. They made mutual declarations of love in December in Zwickau, where Clara appeared in concert. Corrections? On 30 September 1853, the 20-year-old composer Johannes Brahms arrived unannounced at the door of the Schumanns carrying a letter of introduction from violinist Joseph Joachim. The work comes to a close with a march of the Davidsbündler—the league of King David's men against the Philistines—in which may be heard the clear accents of truth in contest with the dull clamour of falsehood embodied in a quotation from the seventeenth century Grandfather's Dance. His teacher, Friedrich Wieck, a German pianist, had assured him that he could become the finest … But at Leipzig his time was devoted not to the law but to song composition, improvisation at the piano, and attempts to write novels. (He later worked closely with Clara to popularize Schumann's compositions during her long widowhood.). Other notable works included Symphony No. His family encouraged him to enter the University of Leipzig as a law student. 2. There is something heartrending about poor Schumann's epochal inefficiency as a conductor. On the other hand, Schumann disparaged the school of Franz Liszt and Richard Wagner. Raro may represent either the composer himself, Wieck's daughter Clara, or the combination of the two (Clara + Robert). Schumann's fusion of literary ideas with musical ones—known as program music—may have first taken shape in Papillons, Op. 102. These characters bled into his editorial writing in the Neue Zeitschrift für Musik (New Journal for Music), a Leipzig-based publication that he co-founded. In 1861 Brahms published his Variations for Piano Four Hands, Op. He suffered a renewal of the symptoms that had threatened him earlier. 102 (87) Academic Festival Overture in C minor, Op. Clara had been pressing him to widen his scope, to launch out in other media—above all, the orchestra. "Since You Asked ...," Robert Schumann: Then, Now and Always. Diagnosed with psychotic melancholia, he died of pneumonia two years later at the age of 46, without recovering from his mental illness. Concerto per violoncello e orchestra in La minore op. The festive mood does not preclude moments of melancholic introspection in the Intermezzo. To this end he began a study of music theory under Heinrich Dorn, a German composer six years his senior and, at that time, conductor of the Leipzig Opera. Schumann’s father was a bookseller and publisher. For Schumann, this was a period of prolific composition in piano pieces, which were published either at once or, in revised forms, later. In 1837 Schumann published his Symphonic Studies, a complex set of étude-like variations written in 1834–1835, which demanded a finished piano technique. These variations were based on a theme by the adoptive father of Ernestine von Fricken. Under family pressure, he entered the University of Leipzig to study law in 1828, while taking piano lessons with Friedrich Wieck. 9 (1834) is one of Schumann's most characteristic piano works. Robert Schumann: Cello Concerto in A Minor Third movement, “Sehr lebhaft” (“Very lively”), of Robert Schumann's Cello Concerto in A Minor , Opus 129; from a 1953 recording featuring cellist Pablo Casals and the Prades Festival Orchestra conducted by Casals. Seattle Symphony Live. It must suffice to say that it is Schumann's greatest work in large form for piano solo. In 1840, after a long and acrimonious legal battle with Wieck, who opposed the marriage, Schumann married Wieck's daughter Clara. In August 1849, on the occasion of the centenary of Goethe's birth, completed scenes of Schumann's Scenes from Goethe's Faust were performed in Dresden, Leipzig and Weimar. 129: Authorities WorldCat; Wikipedia; VIAF: 293460666; BNF: 13918929g: Composer Schumann, Robert: Opus/Catalogue Number Op./Cat. Robert Schumann’s most characteristic work is introverted and tends to record precise moments and their moods. 1 16 (1838), considered one of Schumann's greatest works, carried his fantasy and emotional range deeper. From 1850 to 1854, Schumann composed in a wide variety of genres. [2] Schumann began to compose before the age of seven, but his boyhood was spent in the cultivation of literature as much as music—undoubtedly influenced by his father, a bookseller, publisher, and novelist. https://www.britannica.com/biography/Robert-Schumann, Classical Net - Biography of Robert Schumann. President, Royal Musical Association, 1970–74. The work—described as "one of the peaks of the piano literature, lofty in conception and faultless in workmanship" [Hutcheson]—was dedicated to the young English composer William Sterndale Bennett, for whom Schumann had had a high regard when they worked together in Leipzig. After a long and acrimonious legal battle with her father, Schumann married Clara Wieck on 12 September 1840, at Schönefeld, the day before her 21st birthday. 4 in D minor (the latter a pioneering work in "cyclic form", was performed that year but published only much later after revision and extensive re-orchestration as Op. 3 in F minor, Op. Schumann had by now entered upon one of his most fertile creative periods, producing a series of imaginative works for piano. 98 (at the Adagio coda, taken from the last song of the cycle). In 1837 Schumann formally asked Clara’s father for permission to marry her, but Wieck evaded his request. December 19, 2020 - 7:35pm Ricardo Garcia, tenor BEETHOVEN Symphony No. Partly through his protégé Brahms, Schumann's ideals and musical vocabulary became widely disseminated. They married in 1840—despite her father’s objections—and had eight children. Cookies. 77 | Schumann Cello Concerto in A minor, Op. 94, Five Pieces in Folk Style for cello and piano, Op. The critics received Robert's music coolly, with Henry Fothergill Chorley being particularly harsh. The subject of Genoveva—based on Ludwig Tieck and Christian Friedrich Hebbel's plays—was not seen an ideal choice. Indeed, 1840 (the Liederjahr or year of song) is highly significant in Schumann's musical legacy, despite his earlier deriding of works for piano and voice as inferior. He is widely regarded as one of the greatest composers of the Romantic era. For other uses, see, This article is about the German composer. Schumann found himself abandoned for 16 months, during which he wrote the great Fantasy in C Major for piano and edited the Neue Zeitschrift für Musik (New Journal for Music), a periodical that he had helped to found in 1834 and of which he had been editor since early 1835. Schumann published most of his critical writings in the journal, and often lambasted the popular taste for flashy technical displays from figures whom Schumann perceived as inferior composers, or "philistines". 22a (5) He left an array of acclaimed music in virtually all the forms then known. [22] Brahms published it in a supplementary volume to the complete edition of Schumann's piano music. 1, Variations on the name "Abegg" in F, Op. More recently, critics have suggested that the changes in style may be explained by "lucid experimentation".[17]. 42 (relating the tale of a woman's marriage, childbirth and widowhood); the Dichterliebe of Heine, Op. His musical powers had also declined by the late 1840s, though some of his works still display flashes of his former genius. During Eastertide 1830, he heard the Italian violinist, violist, guitarist, and composer Niccolò Paganini play in Frankfurt. 35 (58) Concerto for Violin no 1 in A minor, Op. He made his debut as a conductor—a role in which he was invariably ineffective—with its first performance in December of that year. James and Constance Alsop Professor of Music, University of Liverpool, 1947–62.... Get a Britannica Premium subscription and gain access to exclusive content. Experience the sights and sounds of live Seattle Symphony performances in high-definition video and high-fidelity streaming audio from the comfort of your living room or on the go! Robert Schumann and Clara Schumann at the piano. During Schumann’s work on The Peri, the newly founded Leipzig Conservatory had been opened with Mendelssohn as director and Schumann as professor of “piano playing, composition, and playing from score”; again he had embarked on activities for which he was unsuited. We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. [25] In particular, meningiomas are known to produce musical auditory hallucinations such as Schumann reported. A genius! Schumann campaigned to revive interest in major composers of the past, including Mozart, Beethoven, and Weber. [14], Kreisleriana, Op. 15 SCHUMANN: ... Gautier Capuçon, cello Andreas Ottensamer, clarinet BRAHMS: Trio for clarinet, violoncello and piano, Op. His father, who had encouraged his musical aspirations, died in 1826 when Schumann was 16. Thereafter, neither his mother nor his guardian encouraged him to pursue a music career. Despite her delicate appearance, she was an extremely strong-willed and energetic woman, who kept up a demanding schedule of concert tours in between bearing several children. Be on the lookout for your Britannica newsletter to get trusted stories delivered right to your inbox. 77 (58) Concerto for Cello no 1 in E flat major, Op. 98 (2) Next page. The Op. 1 in D minor, op. No. Later, he composed piano and orchestral works, and many Lieder (songs for voice and piano). With her permission, by Christmas he was back in Leipzig, at age 20 taking piano lessons from his old master Friedrich Wieck, who assured him that he would be a successful concert pianist after a few years' study with him. 54, originally conceived and performed as a one-movement Fantasy for Piano and Orchestra in 1841. "[9] The Symphony in G minor was not published during Schumann's lifetime but has been played and recorded in recent times. At age 14, Schumann wrote an essay on the aesthetics of music and also contributed to a volume, edited by his father, titled Portraits of Famous Men. Wieck claimed that Schumann damaged his finger by using a mechanical device that held back one finger while he exercised the others—which was supposed to strengthen the weakest fingers. Liszt gave him assistance and encouragement. May 27, 2021. On March 4 he was removed to a private asylum at Endenich, near Bonn, where he lived for nearly two and a half years, able to correspond for a time with Clara and his friends. Composer Sir Edward Elgar called Schumann "my ideal.". 2, 4, 6) or the urgent passion of others (Nos. [18] In it, Schumann attempted to abolish recitative, which he regarded as an interruption to the musical flow (an influence on Richard Wagner; Schumann's consistently flowing melody can be seen as a forerunner to Wagner's Melos). Even though he often disregarded the principles of musical composition, he created works regarded as admirable for his age. Schumann’s nervous constitution had never been strong. 23, based on this theme. Schumann's biographers attribute the sweetness, doubt, and despair of these songs to the emotions aroused by his love for Clara and the uncertainties of their future together. To each of these characters he devotes a section of Carnaval. 81 (103) Variations on a theme by Haydn (116) Hungarian Dances (21) for Orchestra, WoO 1 (10) 41 No. Until 1840, Schumann wrote exclusively for the piano. Some argue that, as the disability appeared to have been chronic and have affected the hand, and not just a finger, it was not likely caused by a finger strengthening device.[7]. The stamps were soon replaced by a pair featuring music written by Schumann. Schumann, Märchenbilder; Shostakovich, Sonata; Shulman, Theme and Variations; Vieuxtemps, Sonata, Op. It was a form of tinnitus, or perhaps an auditory hallucination related to his major depressive episode. He also began to seriously study piano with Friedrick Wieck, a well-known piano teacher. He had contemplated suicide on at least three occasions in the 1830s, and from the mid-1840s on he suffered periodic attacks of severe depression and nervous exhaustion. The songs Belsatzar, Op. 2 (Butterflies), a musical portrayal of events in Jean Paul's novel Flegeljahre. In July he wrote to his mother, "My whole life has been a struggle between Poetry and Prose, or call it Music and Law." 4. Schumann used the figure to express "fantastic and mad" emotional states. Concerto for Piano no 1 in C minor, Op. 2 in C Major, but because of aural nerve trouble nearly 10 months passed before the score was finished. 82 Howard Shelley, Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra $19.98 $ 19. BEETHOVEN Symphony No. Critics have disputed the quality of his work at this time; a widely held view has been that his music showed signs of mental breakdown and creative decay. Today’s audiences are bearing witness to the greatest displays of skill in history.” Please refer to the appropriate style manual or other sources if you have any questions. Clara returned his kisses but obeyed her father when he ordered her to break off the relationship. 57 (39) Age of Gold Suite, Op. Updates? On February 26 he asked to be taken to a lunatic asylum, and the next day he attempted suicide by drowning. Rescued by boatmen and taken home, he asked to be taken to an asylum for the insane. In late February 1854, Schumann's symptoms increased, the angelic visions sometimes being replaced by demonic ones. A report by Janisch and Nauhaus on Schumann's autopsy indicates that he had a "gelatinous" tumor at the base of the brain; it may have represented a colloid cyst, a craniopharyngioma, a chordoma, or a chordoid meningioma. For a few months he studied the piano seriously with a celebrated teacher, Friedrich Wieck, and thus got to know Wieck’s nine-year-old daughter Clara, a brilliant pianist who was just then beginning a successful concert career. [5] During his studies with Wieck, some stories claim that Schumann permanently injured a finger on his right hand. 57 and Die beiden Grenadiere, Op. Besides the single note sounding in his ear (possibly evidence of tinnitus,[6]) he imagined that voices sounded in his ear and he heard angelic music. The strain of this long courtship and its consummation may have led to this great outpouring of Lieder (vocal songs with piano accompaniment). 83 (136) Concerto for Violin in D major, Op. In 1828, Schumann left high school, and after a trip during which he met the poet Heinrich Heine in Munich, he left to study law at the University of Leipzig under family pressure. In 1840 Schumann returned to a field he had neglected for nearly 12 years, that of the solo song; in the space of 11 months (February–December 1840) he composed nearly all the songs on which much of his reputation rests: the cycles Myrthen (Myrtles), the two Liederkreise (Song-Cycles) on texts by Heinrich Heine and Joseph Eichendorff, Dichterliebe (Poet’s Love) and Frauenliebe und Leben (Woman’s Love and Life), and many separate songs. In 1845 he began another symphony, No. The rest of the work was written later in 1849, and the overture (which Schumann described as "one of the sturdiest of [his] creations") in 1853. The theme was one he had used several times before: in his Second String Quartet, again in his Lieder-Album für die Jugend, and finally in the slow movement of his Violin Concerto. [29], Schumann heard a persistent A-note at the end of his life. But in Leipzig Schumann instead focused on improvisation, song composition, and writing novels. On this occasion Clara played bravura Variations by Henri Herz, a composer whom Schumann was already deriding as a philistine. He entered Dr. Franz Richarz's sanatorium in Endenich, a quarter of Bonn, and remained there until he died on 29 July 1856 at the age of 46. In August 1835, he learned that Ernestine was born illegitimate, which meant that she would have no dowry. 9 in C, in 1839 Schumann wrote the Faschingsschwank aus Wien (Carnival Prank from Vienna). She became the authoritative editor of her husband's works for Breitkopf & Härtel. The 1833 deaths of Schumann's brother Julius and his sister-in-law Rosalie in the worldwide cholera pandemic brought on a severe depressive episode. He never surpassed the searching beauty of the slow movements (Nos. [6], The Davidsbündlertänze, Op. By spring 1834, Schumann had sufficiently recovered to inaugurate Die Neue Zeitschrift für Musik ("New Journal for Music"), first published on 3 April 1834. Most of Schumann's late works, particularly the Violin Concerto, the Fantasy for Violin and Orchestra and the Violin Sonata No. In 1854, after attempting suicide by drowning, he was sent to a private asylum, where he died two and a half years later at the age of 46, though the exact cause is debated. 97: Romance (27) Festive Overture, Op. Assistant Controller of Music, British Broadcasting Corporation, London, 1962–67. The work ends in joy and a degree of mock-triumph. Their marriage supported a remarkable business partnership, with Clara acting as an inspiration, critic, and confidante to her husband. Schumann’s Opus 1, the Abegg Variations for piano, was published in 1831. There he composed waltzes in the style of Franz Schubert, afterward used in his piano cycle Papillons (Opus 2; 1829–31), and practiced industriously with a view to abandoning law and becoming a virtuoso pianist—with the result that his mother agreed to allow him to return to Leipzig in October 1830 to study for a trial period with Wieck, who thought highly of his talent but doubted his stability and capacity for hard work. 3, all from 1853, have entered the repertoire. Concerto for Piano no 1 in D minor, Op. He devoted 1842 to composing chamber music, including the Piano Quintet in E-flat, Op. In the autumn of 1844 his work was interrupted by a serious nervous collapse. Many of his best-known piano pieces were written for his wife, the pianist Clara Schumann. No. 1, 3, 5, 7) […] To appreciate it a high level of aesthetic intelligence is required […] This is no facile music, there is severity alike in its beauty and its passion. Prior to the legal case and subsequent marriage, the lovers exchanged love letters and rendezvoused in secret. Fearful that her limited means would force him to earn his living like a "day-labourer," Schumann completely broke with her toward the end of the year. In the winter, the Schumanns revisited Vienna, traveling to Prague and Berlin in the spring of 1847 and in the summer to Zwickau, where he was received with enthusiasm. What is now thought to have been a combination of bipolar disorder and perhaps mercury poisoning led to "manic" and "depressive" periods in Schumann's compositional productivity. It has been the favourite encore of several great pianists, including Vladimir Horowitz. 48 (depicting a lover rejected, but coming to terms with his painful loss through renunciation and forgiveness); and Myrthen, a collection of songs, including poems by Goethe, Rückert, Heine, Byron, Burns and Moore. 7 of the set, is one of the most famous piano pieces ever written, and has been performed in myriad forms and transcriptions. On February 10, 1854, Schumann complained of a “very strong and painful” attack of the ear malady that had troubled him before; this was followed by aural hallucinations. In 1843 he wrote Paradise and the Peri, his first attempt at concerted vocal music, an oratorio style work based on Lalla-Rookh by Thomas Moore. In a letter from Leipzig dated April 1832, Schumann bids his brothers, "Read the last scene in Jean Paul's Flegeljahre as soon as possible, because the Papillons are intended as a musical representation of that masquerade." It was rumoured that she and Brahms destroyed many of Schumann's later works, which they thought were tainted by his madness, but only the Five Pieces for Cello and Piano are known to have been destroyed. Live Audition (if advanced) All string applicants must be prepared to play all major and minor scales and arpeggios in fluent tempo. 6, (also published in 1837 despite the low opus number) literally "Dances of the League of David", is an embodiment of the struggle between enlightened Romanticism and musical philistinism. 36; Everything except selection #4 is to be played from memory. The Symphony proudly launches a brand-new subscription-based streaming service for the 2020–2021 season: Seattle Symphony Live. While still at school in Zwickau, he read the works of the German poet-philosophers Schiller and Goethe, as well as Byron and the Greek tragedians. This pleased him, since until that time he was famous in only Dresden and Leipzig. Let us know if you have suggestions to improve this article (requires login). The first movement of the Fantasie contains a musical quote from Beethoven's song cycle, An die ferne Geliebte, Op. 102, String Quartet No. Past Concerts - 2020-2021 Season. 49, both to Heine's words, show Schumann at his best as a ballad writer, although the dramatic ballad is less congenial to him than the introspective lyric. (Vienna had banned the song due to harsh memories of Napoleon's invasion.) Carnaval, Op. Robert Schumann was a German Romantic composer renowned particularly for his piano music, lieder (songs), and orchestral music. For the French statesman and founding father of the European Union, see, According to Daverio, there is no evidence of the middle name "Alexander" that appears in some sources, Robert Schumann's "Artikel Neue Bahnen", 28 October 1853. ; Wikipedia ; VIAF: 293460666 ; BNF: 13918929g: composer Schumann, Robert: Opus/Catalogue Number Op./Cat with. 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