Monday, February 25, 2013

Chopin...an emotional fellow!

We are studying Chopin in music this month.  Students will be using QR codes today to learn more about him, and listen to the Minute Waltz.  We are also reading a book about Chopin a little each class period as we experience listening to his music.

.Frederic Francois Chopin was a composer of the Romantic Era.  He was born March 1, 1810 in Zelazowa, Poland and died October 17, 1849 in Paris, France (from tuberculosis).  Chopin was an emotional musician, perfect for the musical era in which he was born!  As a small child he would sit under the piano as his sister practiced and become very emotional, even to the point of crying, as he listened to her play.  

Chopin began his musical career at a very early age.  He once played for the czar of Russia and was given a diamond ring in appreciation!  This piece below, entitled the "Revolutionary Etude Opus 10 No. 12" is not the gentle music of his Nocturnes.  Instead, you can imagine the emotions of anger and frustration in this piece of music.  It is said that he wrote it as a response to Poland's failed revolution against Russia.  "All this has caused me much pain. Who could have foreseen it!" (Niecks, Frederick (1945), Frederic Chopin as a Man and Musician, p. 98.)

The pianist performing is Russian Stanislav Stanislavovich Bunin.  He is fantastic.  I think that I would like to challenge myself to begin learning this piece of music.  It would be a challenge for sure!