Music Appreciation

《Fantasy Pieces》

Robert Schumann (1810-1856)

Matthias Albani, Vi (1694)
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A German composer and music critic, Robert Schumann composed “Fantasy Pieces, Op. 73” in February of 1849, completing the pieces in as short as three days. It was originally named “Soiree-Stücke,” but after several editions the title also underwent many revisions before the title “Fantasy Pieces” was finally decided. The pieces display a vast spectrum of emotions: The first piece contains a gentle, beautiful melody that conveys a melancholic sadness, the second piece turns passionate and fervent, while the third is filled with a joyous sentiment of happiness and bliss. Throughout the three pieces, the emotions shift constantly, as if the listener experiences the various moods from dawn to dusk, and finally reaches a bright magnificence in the end. The work’s structure shows a cohesive completeness, while it reveals chracteristics of both a sonata piece and a character piece. In this recording, the German violin replaces the clarinet in playing the melody, allowing the originally subtle and passionate melody to fully exhibit its dramatic intensity, thereby giving the piece a new, refreshing interpretation.