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Robert Schumann

Saturday, March 25, 2017


My Classical Notes

February 26

Emil Gilels Plays Beethoven

My Classical NotesJust last week I was listening to the late pianist, Emil Gilels, and I was blown away by his amazing musicianship. Today I have come across a new recording of Gilels playing the five Beethoven piano concerti: Beethoven: Piano Concertos Nos. 1-5 (complete), with the Cleveland Orchestra. Variations (32) on an Original Theme in C minor, WoO 80 Variations (12) on a Russian Dance, WoO 71 Variations (6) on an original theme ‘Die Ruinen von Athen’, Op. 76 All performed by Emil Gilels (piano) Gramophone magazine wrote the following when Mr. Gillels died: “Emil Gilels stands out as giant among giants. In terms of virtuosity he was second to none, yet his leonine power was tempered by a delicacy and poetry that few have matched and none has surpassed.” Here is Emil Gillels, as he performs the music of Schumann, Brahms, and Chopin:

ArtsJournal: music

March 17

Ten Woman Composers From History That You Probably Don't Know About

In assembling this list, critic Alexandra Coghlan made it a point to avoid the names that always come up (Hildegard of Bingen, Clara Schumann, Elisabeth Jacquet de la Guerre), but ranged from 9th-century Byzantium to 17th-century Milan (a nun, no less) to the Depression-era U.S. (includes sound clips)






Robert Schumann
(1810 – 1856)

Robert Schumann (8 June 1810 - 29 July 1856) was a German composer, aesthete and influential music critic. He is regarded as one of the greatest and most representative composers of the Romantic era. Schumann left the study of law to return to music, intending to pursue a career as a virtuoso pianist. He had been assured by his teacher, Friedrich Wieck, that he could become the finest pianist in Europe, but a hand injury caused by a device he created with the false belief that it would help increase the size of his hands prevented that. One of the most promising careers as a pianist had thus come to an end. Schumann then focused his musical energies on composing. Schumann's published compositions were written exclusively for the piano until 1840; he later composed works for piano and orchestra; many lieder (songs for voice and piano); four symphonies; an opera; and other orchestral, choral, and chamber works. His writings about music appeared mostly in the New Journal for Music, a Leipzig-based publication which he jointly founded. In 1840, Schumann married pianist Clara Wieck when she was of age, following a long and acrimonious legal battle with her father, his former teacher, to gain his approval of the match. Clara also composed music and had a considerable concert career. For the last two years of his life, after an attempted suicide, Schumann was confined to a mental institution, at his own request.



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