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Frederic Chopin

"Chopin can make the piano sing but his repertoire..."



by 2 Jurors

Frédéric François Chopin was a Polish composer and virtuoso pianist of the Romantic era, who wrote primarily for the solo piano. He gained and has maintained renown worldwide as one of the leading musicians of his era, whose "poetic genius was based on a professional technique that was without equal in his generation." Chopin was born in what was then the Duchy of Warsaw, and grew up in Warsaw, which after 1815 became part of Congress Poland. A child prodigy, he completed his musical education and composed many of his works in Warsaw before leaving Poland, aged 20, less than a month before the outbreak of the November 1830 Uprising.

At the age of 21 he settled in Paris. Thereafter, during the last 18 years of his life, he gave only some 30 public performances, preferring the more intimate atmosphere of the salon. He supported himself by selling his compositions and teaching piano, for which he was in high demand. Chopin formed a friendship with Franz Liszt and was admired by many of his musical contemporaries, including Robert Schumann. In 1835 he obtained French citizenship. After a failed engagement to a Polish girl, from 1837 to 1847 he maintained an often troubled relationship with the French writer George Sand. A brief and unhappy visit to Majorca with Sand in 1838–39 was one of his most productive periods of composition. In his last years, he was financially supported by his admirer Jane Stirling, who also arranged for him to visit Scotland in 1848. Through most of his life, Chopin suffered from poor health. He died in Paris in 1849, probably of tuberculosis.

All of Chopin's compositions include the piano. Most are for solo piano, although he also wrote two piano concertos, a few chamber pieces, and some songs to Polish lyrics. His keyboard style is highly individual and often technically demanding; his own performances were noted for their nuance and sensitivity. Chopin invented the concept of instrumental ballade. His major piano works also include sonatas, mazurkas, waltzes, nocturnes, polonaises, études, impromptus, scherzos, and preludes, some published only after his death. Many contain elements of both Polish folk music and of the classical tradition of J.S. Bach, Mozart and Schubert, all of whom he particularly admired. His innovations in style, musical form, and harmony, and his association of music with nationalism, were influential throughout and after the late Romantic period.

Both in his native Poland and beyond, Chopin's music, his status as one of music's earliest "superstars", his association (if only indirect) with political insurrection, his love life and his early death have made him, in the public consciousness, a leading symbol of the Romantic era. His works remain popular, and he has been the subject of numerous films and biographies of varying degrees of historical accuracy.

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This subjury specializes in classical music. It is a place reserved for fans looking for recommendations and critics having opinions to share. We welcome you all!

img Anonymous posted a review

Chopin is great, though I tend to get bored after listening to him for an extended period of time. Chopin's music is more of the same. There are excellent sonatas, ballades, scherzos, etudes, preludes, polonaises, waltzes, nocturnes, mazurkas, barcarolle, berceuse, fantaise-impromptu, but even just considering piano works, Beethoven is arguably the better composer.

on April 15, 2016

This subjury specializes in classical music. It is a place reserved for fans looking for recommendations and critics having opinions to share. We welcome you all!

img Alfred Evans posted a review

Chopin was the best composer for the #piano, period. I know technically he was no better than Liszt as a pianist, but the emotional depth of his works are immense. Chopin was by no means a prolific composer by classical standard compared to most top notch guys of his caliber, but what he did compose was of high quality. His music is embued with an appealing melancholy that gives it depth and substance.

After all, The Scherzi, Polonaises, and the Nocturnes masterpieces that inspired virtuosos like Liszt to fuse lyricism with virtuosity. His Preludes and Mazurkas are unsurpassed in their ability to evoke such quiet intimacy from the piano.

For his contribution to the piano, he deserves a 80. But since he focused almost exclusively on only one instrument, it wouldn't be fair to rate him higher than that.

on April 11, 2016

Tech Mod agree, just like paganini in violin, period.

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Frederic Chopin

Chopin can make the piano sing but his repertoire is limited.
Book rating: 79.8 out of 100 with 2 ratings