Robert Schumann wrote four symphonies. The last of them, the third (don′t ask! …well, not yet, anyway) was dubbed – not by Schumann – The Rhenish. With the exception of one movement, it’s a rather jolly work and its nickname seems, for once, almost justified [seeming to conjure the great waterway (of course); jolly peasants; mist-shrouded castles; historic, picturesque villages; vineyards, etc.] And even the other movement – “In the Character of the Accompaniment to a Solemn Ceremony” – has, somehow or other, become associated with Cologne and its cathedral – the story is that the composer attended the elevation of a cardinal in the church: he didn’t.
Clara Schumann also contributed – though wittingly this time –to the artistic ethos surrounding the Rhine. She set one of Heine’s most famous poems, The Lorelei which tells the dramatic story of a siren-like female whose singing lures unsuspecting boatmen to an early, watery death.
Any copyrighted material on these pages is included as “fair use”, for the purpose of study, and critical analysis only, and will be removed at the request of the copyright owner(s).