Tag Archives: Clara Schumann

Banknotes redux

SPIN: Study Platform on Interlocking Nationalisms, a free online resource dedicated to the study of the Romantic period in Western culture, includes a database devoted to iconography on banknotes, with a special section for composers. As of this writing 33 portraits of composers on banknotes are documented therein, all with full-color reproductions and many with annotations as well.

Above, Clara Schumann on a German 100-mark note issued in 1989. Below, Antonín Dvořák assissts with instructions for banknote origami.

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Filed under Iconography, Reception, Resources, Romantic era

Studien zum Dresdner Musikleben im 19. Jahrhundert

Verlag Dohr launched the series Studien zum Dresdner Musikleben im 19. Jahrhundert  in  2010 with Schumann und Dresden. Edited by Thomas Synofzik and Hans-Günter Ottenberg, the book presents papers from Robert und Clara Schumann in Dresden: Biographische, kompositionsgeschichtliche und soziokulturelle Aspekte, a conference held in Dresden from 15 to 16 May 2008.

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Filed under New series, Romantic era

Sophy and Mendelssohn

In 1833 Sophy Horsley, a well-heeled British teenager, wrote to her aunt “Mendelssohn took my album with him the night of our glee-party, but you have no idea how many names he has got me.” Over the following years Horsley and Mendelssohn Bartholdy, who was a family friend, collected musical works, illustrations, and autographs in a 144-page album measuring 1⅞ by 1¼ inches.

Composers who contributed works or snippets included Mendelssohn Bartholdy himself along with Bellini, Brahms, Chopin, Liszt, Paganini, and Clara Schumann. Drawings and paintings were contributed by Edwin Landseer, Franz Xaver Winterhalter, and Julius Hübner; inscriptions include contributions by Charles Dickens, Jacob Grimm, and Jenny Lind.

This according to “Sophy’s album” by Anne C. Bromer and Julian I. Edison, an article included in Miniature books: 4,000 years of tiny treasures (New York: Abrams, 2007); the book was published in conjunction with an exhibition at The Grolier Club, New York City, from 15 May through 28 July 2007. Many thanks to James Melo for bringing it to our attention!

Below, Rahmaninov plays his transcription of Mendelssohn-Bartholdy’s “Scherzo” from his incidental music for A midsummer night’s dream, written when the composer was a teenager himself.

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Filed under Curiosities, Romantic era, Visual art