Clara Schumann: Complete Solo Piano Works
Clara Schumann née Wieck (1819-1896) has gone down in history as a pianist rather than as a composer. The reasons for that have nothing to do with the quality of her compositions but rest on her decision to stop composing after the death of her husband Robert Schumann. Prevailing attitudes to women were moreover not conducive, as the following entry in her diary shows: "A woman is not expected to have any desire to compose." Yet Clara Schumann did have a desire to compose and had the ability to do so, even if she resorted to performing on the piano instead. She composed an astonishing amount, considering that her performing career and bringing up eight children left her hardly any time for steady work. Limited to piano compositions, songs and a piano trio, her oeuvre tends to fall into two groups: virtuoso works – including a very promising early piano concerto – written for her own concert requirements, and works which confront the Romantic aesthetics, like her piano trio, songs and piano romances.