Clara Schumann’s (or Wieck’s as she was then) Piano Concerto in a is a brilliant piece of juvenilia and leads to one of those fascinating ‘might-have-beens’ that dot human history.
Started when she was thirteen (1833) with what was to be – eventually – the finale, the remaining movements of the concerto were written over the next two years. The work was given its first complete performance in 1835 with the Gewandhaus Orchestra under the direction of Mendelssohn.
Schumann carried on composing but a combination of household duties and keeping up her career as a virtuoso pianist, plus allowing Robert’s composing and compositions precedence, and, of course, the omnipresent male-dominated nineteenth century world, meant that her output was relatively sparce and eventually dried up altogether in later life (when she dedicated herself to editing her husband’s music). For her – and for us – a significant loss!
Piano Concerto in a
00:00 Allegro maestoso
06:46 Romanze: andante non troppo con grazia
11:08 Finale: allegro non troppo – allegro molto
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