Saturday, February 15, 2020

Robert Schumann Festival Continues In H-Town

Last weekend's Tale's post: "Robert Schumann Festival of Melodic Music In Houston", talked of the two week Festival being held in Houston, TX,  of some of Robert Schumann's great symphonic works.

Robert Schumann [1810 - 1856]

The fetching Mrs. Sheralyn and I will once again be blessed to be in attendance at Jones Hall in downtown Houston to hear our wonderful symphony led by our dynamic Maestro, Andres Orozco-Estrada, in this second weekend of the Schumann Festival.  This Saturday we will be hearing Schumann's great Symphonies 3 and 4, along with his Cello Concerto.

From last weekend's post:  "Robert Schumann wrote some of the most beautiful and melodic pieces in all genres of classical music.  But Schumann also had a very troubled life; so, he was blessed to have as his wife and love fellow pianist and composer, Clara Wieck-Schumann, who stood by his side in his troubled life.  I talk about this relationship along with his friend, Johannes Brahms, in this previous post: 'Robert, Clara and Johannes'."

This from the Houston Symphony Orchestra website:  "Robert Schumann’s music speaks to us in a timeless, universal language.  His romance with virtuoso pianist Clara Wieck is a love story for the ages, while his ongoing battle with depression, and eventual descent into insanity, makes his noble, life-affirming creations all the more remarkable.  Join us for a deep dive into the trials and the triumphs, the love and the madness, the man and the music.  In this concert with guest artist Alisa Weilerstein, Alley Theatre Resident Acting Company member Jay Sullivan introduces each piece with words based on Schumann’s writings."

The third symphony by Schumann is my favorite with its beautiful melodies and bright character.  It is known as the "Rhenish".  It was actually the last symphony he composed but because it was published before his #4, it is recognized as Symphony #3.  This symphony was scored in Eb Major with 5 movements [instead of the usual 4 in a classical symphony]: 1. lively, 2. Scherzo, 3. moderato, 4. "Cathedral" - solemn, and 5. lively.

Robert Schumann composed his cello concerto in only two weeks.  It was scored in a minor, with the usual 3 movements [without a break between the movements]:  1. Allegro, 2. Lento, and 3. Vivace.  The young American cellist from Rochester, NY, Alisa Weilerstein, will be the soloist in Schumann's cello concerto.

As usual, when the Sheralyn and I go to a Houston Symphony concert at Jones Hall, I like to share a little of what we will be hearing on Saturday night.  So, please turn up the volume, play in full screen and enjoy some beautiful music that we will be hearing in this final weekend of the Robert Schumann Festival.

Robert Schumann: Symphony #3 in Eb Major, "Rhenish":

Robert Schumann: Cello Concerto in A minor:

Robert Schumann: Symphony #4 in D minor, Movement 4, Allegro Vivace:

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