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  Founder: Len Mullenger
Classical Editor: Rob Barnett

SCHUMANN, Robert
b Zwickau, 6 June 1810
d Endenich, 29 July 1856, aged forty-six

The son of a well-to-do bookseller and publisher, he had a wide literary education. Though his parents were not musical he was allowed piano lessons at school, and soon showed outstanding ability. When his father, who had encouraged him, died, his mother directed him towards law, which he studied from 1828 at Leipzig University. His heart was in music, however, and in 1830 he found board and lodging with his piano teacher, Wieck. In 1832 his right hand became permanently crippled, so he concentrated on composing, and also embarked on his secondary career as a writer and critic. He married Wieck's younger daughter, Clara, a concert pianist, in 1840. She encouraged him to develop his gifts, from writing songs and piano pieces to symphonies and chamber works. But marital friction seriously affected his health, and his near nervous breakdown may have been caused by this or by an earlier attack of syphilis. He resigned from a post Mendelssohn had created for him in the new Leipzig Conservatory in 1843, and in 1844 the couple moved to the quiet of Dresden. In 1850 he accepted the post of director of music in Dusseldorf, but he was forced to resign in 1853 because he was rapidly declining mentally. He threw himself into the Rhine in 1854, was rescued and taken to an asylum near Bonn, where he died two and a half years later.

1829-31 (19-21)

Papillons, twelve pieces for piano

1830 (20)

Theme and Variations on the name 'Abegg', for piano

1832 (22)

Six Concert Studies on Caprices by Paganini, Set I

1833 (23)

Six Concert Studies on Caprices by Paganini, Set II

1834-5 (24 5)

Carnaval (Scenes mignonnes), twenty-one piano pieces

1836 (26)

Phantasie in C major, for piano

1837 (27)

Fantasiestucke, for piano, Books I and II

p Etudes symphoniques, twelve symphonic studies for piano

Davidsbundler-Tanze, eighteen piano pieces (revised 1850)

1838 (28)

Kinderscenen, thirteen short piano pieces

Kriesleriana, for piano (dedicated to Chopin)

Novelleten, eight piano pieces

1839 (29)

Nachtstucke, for piano

1840 (30)

Dichterliebe (Poet's Love), song cycle

Frauenliebe und -leben, song cycle

Liederkreis, nine songs (Heine)

1841 (31)

Symphony No 1, Spring, in Bb major

Symphony No 4 in D minor (withdrawn and revised in 1851)

Overture, Scherzo and Finale, for orchestra (Finale revised 1845)

Piano Concerto in A minor (1841-5)

1842 (32)

Piano Quintet in Eb major

Piano Quartet in Eb major

Four Fantasiestucke for piano trio, in Am: F: Fm: Am

Andante and Variations for two pianos, two cellos and horn (best known as duet for two pianos)

(1842-7)

Three String Quartets, in Am: F: A

Liederkreise, twelve songs (Eichendorff)

1843 (33)

Das Paradies und die Peri, cantata

1845 6 (35)

Symphony No 2 in C major

1847 (37)

Genoveva, opera (1847-8)

Piano Trio No 1 in D minor and D major

Piano Trio No 2 in F major

1849 (39)

Manfred, dramatic poem

Three Fantasiestucke for piano and clarinet with violin or cello ad lib, in Am: A: A

Adagio and Allegro, for piano and horn, in A flat major

1850 (40)

Symphony No 3 in Eb major, Rhenish

Cello Concerto in A minor

1851 (41)

Piano Trio No 3 in G minor and G major

Violin Sonata in A minor

Violin Sonata in D minor

Four Marchenbilder, for piano and viola (or violin)

1853 (43)

Violin Concerto

Marchenerzahlungen, four pieces for piano, clarinet (or violin), and viola

Introduction and Allegro, for piano

Fantasy, for violin

1854 (44)

p Albumblatter, twenty pieces for piano

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