Recorded on 01/01/2006, uploaded on 02/03/2009
Musician's or Publisher's Notes
Of the collections of character pieces Schumann composed for
the piano, one perhaps stands out a little more than the rest, at least in
terms of its popularity with both performers and the emotional connection it
establishes with audiences. Nearly all adults have a nostalgic view of the
carefree and innocent days of childhood and it was these reminiscences that
served as Schumann's inspiration, and artistic goal, in his Kinderszenen ("Scenes from Childhood").
Having left Leipzig for Vienna, Schumann was separated from
his fiancée Clara and faced the daunting challenge of persuading her father for
her hand in marriage. During this time, Schumann wrote to Clara in letters and
in his music. In March 1838, in a letter to Clara, Schumann remarked, "You once
said to me that I often seemed like a child, and I suddenly got inspired and
knocked off around 30 quaint little pieces." Of these thirty pieces, thirteen
were selected to become the Kinderszenen
Nearly all of the thirteen pieces are simple ternary forms.
However, their simple construction and harmonies conceal a deeper complexity,
which makes them all the more touching. Furthermore, Schumann's masterly
command of imagery is in no way hampered by such simple expression. Beginning
in G major, Kinderszenen embarks on a musical journey that is quite
fitting for the vivid imagination of a child. Moving through various key
relationships, in the tenth piece Schumann finds himself as far removed from G
major as is musically possible—G sharp minor. Though, in a daring move, and a
wholly Romantic one at that, the music comes full circle to close in G major in
the final piece.
Pretty good...I played this a few years ago, and it's a little better than how I played it. :)
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