Child Prodigy Research Report – Clara Schumann
There are many child prodigies in the world that have made a huge impact on the way we view it or think about it. A fantastic one would be Clara Schumann, and this is the wonderful lady that I will be speaking about today. Clara was born on September 13th, 1819, and sadly died on May 20th, 1986. She was a very successful German pianist and composer. She was sometimes known as Europe’s Queen and the Piano because she was so talented and so professional. She was the wife of the famous composer, Robert Schumann, and they had eight children between the years of 1841 and 1854. She started playing the piano at age five and by the 1835 she had established a reputation throughout Europe as a child prodigy. I will be examining her challenges and contributions to society, take a look at how the education system regarded her, and analyse the difficulties that she encountered. You will learn about the impact that Clara had on many an what she has done.
In Clara’s early childhood days, she had greatly participated herself in playing the piano. Clara’s father and mother had separated when she was are five years old. She had moved with her father, Friedrich Wieck. Her mother, Marianna performed on the piano at concerts and then continued with her career even looking after all of her children. At the beginning, Clara was playing with her father, which even though he was tough and judgemental, was helpful to her considering he was an ambitious music teacher. His name was Friedrich Wieck, and he has been playing and teaching the piano for years before Clara even began. Friedrich said long before Clara was born that he was going to make his child a performing artist of the composition, and counterpoint and started performing at the age of eight under her father’s eyes and heart. At the age of 9, Clara proved herself a prodigy with her concert debut. When Clara reached the age of 11, she performed her first recital in Leipzig. This is how Clara emerged from being a young girl to a professional pianist that performs for others. As she grew older, she developed even further.
As Clara grew older into her high school years and early adult years, she attended school which helped her grow in her music career as well. She attended Leipzig University and studied music and composition. They thought that she was fantastic and playing the piano and that she was going to go far with her career. She got top marks in her class and people were looking up to her and going to her for assistance. This furthered her knowledge and compassion for music, which improved and inspired her to continue. It did not last long that she attended school, because she wanted to pursue her music career sooner than later and she found that it was difficult doing school and creating music at the same time. Clara had started to travel for tours to perform with her husband. She started in her country, but then reached out to Europe and further. Her husband, had caught an illness which had rattled her work. Later on in that year, Clara had been introduced to a violinist named Joseph Joachim, and they started to perform together. She had helped improve the techniques of playing the piano as well. Overall, Clara Schumann had a lot of support within pursuing her career as a successful pianist. Clara had a sense of determination and said that nothing would step in the way of getting in between the piano and her hands.
Throughout Clara’s years of learning music and performing, she had earned and won awards and have accomplished many things over all of those years! By the time Clara was eighteen, she was well known to different pianists and composers around Asia and Europe. During her performances, she had won the highest musical honours for musicians award, which was also called The Royal and Imperial Chamber Virtuoso. She accomplished completing her dream of a pianist because even though she had eight children, she still managed to complete what she loved to do and it never interfered. In her later years, Clara became a piano teacher, which she did for fourteen years. Even though Clara is not the most famous pianist in the world, she was one of the best pianists in the romantic period and one of the best female pianists to contribute to the development of music. She was fantastic at performing her own song that she created, but she was also intelligent with interpreting and performing pieces done by other artists. Audiences and other pianists were shocked at how she could perform other pieces with such little practice. They all called her a natural and that it was her purpose for her to be in this world. For her to influence others to chase their dreams and never give up no matter what gets in the way. Clara influenced many individuals and already successful artists.
During Clara’s music career, it was not always easy and full of fun. There were many complications and troubles she had to experience to get where she turned out to be. Firstly, when she was younger, she had to experience the divorce of her mother and father. She was at such a young age that it didn’t affect her as much as an older individual would, but it could have caused her to give up on her love for music, but she chose to continue even though her parents were no longer together. After that, her father took on the responsibility of taking care of her in his home under his rules. This meant that Clara rarely got to see her mother which must have been extremely difficult considering how important her mother was to her. Her father also took on the responsibility of teaching Clara how to play the piano. He was tough, strict, and judgemental, which would have been hard on Clara. She didn’t get the prays the needed to stay confident with her playing skills, but she was determined that she was talented and that she was going to go somewhere with her music someday. As she aged, there were some complications with her marriage in terms of medical reasons. She had to look after him along with her eight children and still continue on with her music career. She also experienced a death of her child before she passed away, which could have affected her music career, but Clara continued to play even though she was in pain. Clara experienced a lot over her years and she could have let things and troubles get in the way of her music career, but she did not let that happen. She enjoyed music so much that she never felt upset that she needed to play again. It got her through the day and got her mind off of all of the bad things going on. As a young woman, she experienced many feeling that slightly impacted her career. All of the losses she experienced and the worried that she had to go through caused her emotional pain and sadness. It caused her to take a couple months off of writing and playing because she needed to focus on herself to make sure she could keep on track and not fall from her career and her family. Overall, Clara was a healthy person physically, and never really had any problems internally. Even though this happened to her, it was not the same with her family (her husband especially). She pushed through the pain and continued on with her musical dream. She was influential to many!
After observing Clara Schumann’s life and her accomplishments, she is something that many people look up to. She has been through extremely difficult times, but still managing to maintain her career and liking with being a pianist. She has a sense of determination that people crave to have. She never gave up on her dream and what she wanted to achieve in life. She never was discouraged from people pushing her down or telling her that she is not good enough, yet it made her stronger and push harder to reach her goal, and in the end, she was a successful pianist, wife, mother, and person in general. She had influenced the world to pursue their dreams even if things got in the way. Clara Schumann was an amazing artist, and an amazing influence.
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- Oron, A. (2007, June). Bach Cantatas Website. Retrieved June, 2007, from http://www.bach-cantatas.com/Lib/Schumann-Clara.htm
- Lessons, C. P. (2017). Clara Schumann – A short Biography. Retrieved 2017, from http://www.choose-piano-lessons.com/clara-schumann.html
- (2011, October 23). Clara Schumann: The troubled career of the pianist. Retrieved from https://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/music/features/clara-schumann-the-troubled-career-of-the-pianist-468981.html