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What Is Robert Schumann?

Referencing Styles : APA | Pages : 1

Robert Schumann has been regarded as one of the best music critics of all time. He was born on 8th June 1810 and was a German. He was involved into a wide range of music items. He was a composer, a pianist as well as a music critic who proved to be very influential. He was regarded as the greatest composers of music and his genre of music mainly includes romanticism. Before pursuing his career in music, Robert Schumann was a student of law. Eventually he left his studies in order to take up piano as a career. He had a desire of becoming a virtuoso pianist. His teacher was Friedrich Wieck who trained him in piano lessons and assured him that he could become one of the finest pianists of Europe. Due to a certain incident, the hands of Robert Schumann got injured and his dreams were shattered. After this incident Schumann primarily focussed on composition of music.

In the year 1840, Schumann shifted his vision again into piano. He wrote composition based on piano. He also composed other orchestral works and other songs for voice and piano. His other works include four symphonies out of which one is opera, another is orchestral, another is choral and another is his chamber works. The best works of Schumann were Carnaval, Kinderszenen, Kreisleriana and the Fantasie in C. A new journal for music published his works. This journal had been co-founded by Schumann and it was a Leipzig-based publication.

Schumann, at a very early age developed the zeal for learning music. He started his study regarding music and piano and was trained under Johann Gottfried Kuntzsch who was his teacher of high school. His love for music did not take much time and he started working on varieties of music. He started composing music without the guidance of his teacher. There were some principles of music which were not admired by Schumann but he created works which were far beyond his age and admired by his teacher and his close friends. Schumann wrote an essay which was based on aesthetics of music. His father wrote a book named Portraits of Famous Men where there was contribution from Schumann in a particular volume. The Universal Journal of Music 1859 portrayed him as a child who had rare talent in music and who could feel and reflect the exact characteristic traits of a particular melody. He had a rare talent of sketching the different dispositions of his close friends through certain figures and passages on the piano so accurately that everyone was full of laughter seeing his work.

During his school days, Schumann read the works of different German Philosophers in order to gain inspiration from them. The list of these philosophers include Schiller, Goethe, Byron and the Greek tragedians. Among all these poets and philosophers, the most powerful and permanent inspirational figure of Schumann was Jean Paul, who was a German writer. Jean Paul had influenced Schumann in writing novels such as Juniusabende and Selene. Juniusabende was completed in the year 1826 by Schumann. There were other examples of incidents by which Schumann’s interest in music was affirmed. He attended a performance of Ignaz Moscheles in Karisbad. Other works which attracted Schumann were works of Beethoven, Mendelssohn and Schubert.

During the year 1830 to 1834, there were many incidents that proved to be significant in Schumann’s life. He met with Niccolo Paganini who was a violinist, guitarist and composer  of Frankfurt. At the age of 20, Schumann came back to Leipzig for taking piano lessons from his old trainer named Friedrick Wieck. His trainer assured him that he could successfully look forward to his career as a concert pianist after giving him lessons for a few years. However, this idea of becoming a concert pianist was eventually abandoned by him due to a certain hand injury. He then devoted himself to become a composer. He did prolific compositions of piano tracks which were either published immediately or after revisions. These piano tracks include Papillons and Carnaval and the Etudes symphoniques. Schumann further went on to compose further fertile and creative piano tracks. Among these tracks include compositions such as Kinderszenen, Novelletten, Humoreske, Kreisleriana and many others.

Most of his works which were named as Faschingsschwank were written during a visit to Vienna. During this journey Schumann unearthed a large number of manuscripts which were written by Franz Schubert. One of these manuscripts include Symphony in C major. In the year 1840, Schumann again returned back to his field of the solo song. Again in the span of 11 months he composed a lot of songs which aided to his reputation. Some of these songs include the cycles Myrthen, the two Liederkreise, Joseph Eichenorff, Poet’s love, Woman’s love and life and many other separate songs.

In the year 1841 during months of January and February, Schumann composed Symphony No. 1 in B-flat major which had been recognised as one of his greatest compositions till date. This composition was performed under the composer Felix Mendelssohn at Leipzig. In addition to this he also composed other tracks such as Overture, Scherzo and Finale during months of April and May. He also composed Phantasie which could be played in piano as well as in orchestra in the month of May. These tracks were expanded into the famous Piano Concerto in a Minor by adding two or more movements in the track. This was done in the year 1845.

After this Schumann again composed another Symphony in D minor during the time period of June to September. He also completed sketches of a third symphony which was done in C minor. In the year 1842, Schumann went on to write several chamber works. Out of these works, the finest was the Piano Quintet which was composed in E-flat major scale. The year 1843 market a significant remark on Schumann’s work as in this year, he took the most ambitious work by debuting as a conductor, a  role that proved to be ineffective during its first performance in December in the same year.


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