Persons related to Chopin Persons related to Chopin

Robert Schumann

Robert Schumann

Robert Schumann

*8 VI 1810 Zwickau, †29 VII 1856 Endenich

Robert Schumann. German composer and music critic. He made the first comments on the topic of Chopin's music in an enthusiastic review of Variations in B flat major, op. 2, published in Allgemeine Musikalische Zeitung on 7 December 1831. This review contained the famous sentence: 'Gentlemen hats off, [here is] a genius'. The very subtle and poetic interpretation of the piece was not recognised by Chopin, however the two composers did maintain friendly relations, especially during the 1830s. Schumann composed a musical portrait of Chopin in his Carnival and also dedicated Kreisleriana to him, the Polish composer in turn dedicated his Ballade in F major to Schumman. Schumann published numerous and invariably enthusiastic discussions of Chopin's works in his Neue Zeitschrift für Musik (among others: May 1836: Piano Concertos; December 1837: Etudes, op. 25; December 1838: Impromptu op. 29, Mazurkas op. 30, Scherzo op. 31; 1841: Sonata in B flat minor). These reviews – sometimes kept in the form of a dialogue – are written in a poetic language typical of the time and above all underline the novelty as well as individuality of Chopin's style. He often calls Chopin's pieces 'tremendous' or 'awe-inspiring' and occasionally compares them to works of other composers he valued highly such as Beethoven or Schubert. Critical aspects appear only as a matter of exception in Schumann's reviews (finale of Sonata in B flat minor). Valuable comments regarding Chopin’s creativity and works are also to be found in Schumann's journal as well as in his correspondences.


 

Dedicated manuscripts:

Ballade in F major, Op. 38; Stichvorlage copy (Adolf Gutmann)

Dedicated first editions:

Ballade in F major, Op. 38 (French, E. Troupenas & Co.)
Ballade in F major, Op. 38 (German, Breitkopf & Härtel)

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