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Clara Schumann: Complete Piano Works Box set

3.9 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Box set, August 21, 2001
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (August 21, 2001)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 3
  • Format: Box set
  • Note on Boxed Sets: During shipping, discs in boxed sets occasionally become dislodged without damage. Please examine and play these discs. If you are not completely satisfied, we'll refund or replace your purchase.
  • Label: CPO
  • Run Time: 226 minutes
  • ASIN: B00005MAV1
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #106,980 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Frank T. Manheim on January 14, 2007
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Robert Schumann was a central figure in the Romantic period of classical music. Fitting the period, the romantic idyll of Robert and Clara Schumann's trial-filled courtship and ultimate marriage against the wishes of Clara's father, Friedrich Wieck, has been endlessly written about.

But it is not until now that we have, for the first time, access to the complete piano compositions of Clara Schumann. I cannot imagine a more sensitive and nuanced performance of these works than that of Jozef De Beenhouwer, a Belgian pianist who has made a specialty of the music of both Robert and Clara Schumann. He received the Robert Schumann Prize from the City of Zwickau, Schumann's birthplace, and has completed an unfinished second concerto of Clara Schumann, not included in this set.

Clara Schumann was prepared by her father not only to be a virtuoso pianist. He also envisaged her as the first great female composer. He opposed her marriage to Robert in part because he reckoned that her probable role as a wife and mother - as well as Robert's ambitions as a comoposer - would bury her talent. Clara's first group of compositions were published when she was only 11 years of age. A surviving piano concerto, Op. 7, was performed to critical acclaim when Clara was 16.

Clara Schumann continued as a famous pianist and musical presence throughout her life (40 years after her husband's tragic death). However, although Robert recognized her compositional talent and encouraged her, the birth of eight children, and her role as a wife and pianist early curtailed her compositional activity (old Wieck was right in this respect). Her compositions have widely been regarded as worth little attention in comparison to those of her husband.
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Thanks to the pianist we have all the piano works of Clara Schumann. It is a rare treasure to have such recordings. Every music major should have a copy of these cd's. Clara Schumann as a composer is amazing! Clara Schumann's technical and musical command will raise applause indeed! Of course we credit the pianist for accomplishing such a huge recording endeavor. In general, the pieces are very well played with a marvelous technique and good sensitivity. But I don't personally agree with all the interpretations such as the Mazurka in g minor. I felt that was too slow and schmaltzy. But wow oh wow for the Impromptu Le Sabbat!! What amazing technique of Jozef de Beenhouwer and an awesome creation of Clara.
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This is very recommended for every one who already knows Robert Schumann's music and is interested in widen his/her knowledge about the musical environment that surrounded the composer himself at his time.
But most of all, these delicate pieces of music lead our mind and feelings back to one of the most romantic relationships of XIX century: Robert composed a lot of music inspired by hi beloved wife Clara, who is remembered for being an excellent pianist. This is "the voice" of his Muse.
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I love Clara Schumann. I am glad I was able to get this wonderful recording of all her piano works. As usual, the delivery was very prompt.
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