Schumann Biography

SnakMusic History, Performance, and Theory

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Schumann Biography

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aug 10, 2006, 11:50 pm

Does anyone have a recommendation for a biography of Robert Schumann?


aug 15, 2006, 9:36 pm

I looked in my library, I don't have a bio on Schumann, but I do have one on his wife as a side note. I'd like to see what anyone else has to recomend, as I'd like to get a copy myself!

nov 27, 2009, 9:42 pm

The classic as far as I am concerned is John Daverio's Robert Schumann: Herald of a "New Poetic Age" (Oxford UP, 1997). Schumann's complicated personality, stressful relationship with a strong wife, and mental illness have attracted a lot of biographers who focus more on those dimensions of his life than on his artistic style and worth, but Daverio manages to create a much more well-rounded portrait of the man as musician, complete with extremely sophisticated scholarship. Don't miss it!

nov 30, 2009, 7:44 am

Hey bay1904, thanks for the suggestion!

dec 2, 2009, 5:01 pm

I would also recommend Schumann: The Inner Voices of a Musical Genius by Peter Ostwald. Ostwald is a psychiatrist who obviously focuses more on the psychoanalytic (bipolar disorder--with Schumann's alter egos Eusebius/Florestan/Master Raro) and medical (probable syphilis) aspects of Schumann's creativity. As a physician myself, I find this book especially fascinating.

dec 3, 2009, 6:06 am

Fantastic, thanks!

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