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Concert celebrates piano prodigy Clara Schumann

Schulmann concert webart

Weatherford College master pianist Dr. Hyeyoung Song along with violinist Swang Lin and cellist Oliver Bennett Schlaffer present the Clara Schumann 200th Anniversary Concert concert Friday, Nov. 1, in the Alkek Fine Arts Center.

Doors open at 7 p.m. and the concert begins at 7:30 p.m. Admission is free.

The concert will be the first featuring WC’s new Steinway & Sons Model B Spirio R grand piano, made possible by a generous gift from Richard and Nancy Stuart.

Born in 1819, Schumann’s life was filled with musical triumph and personal tragedy which all made their mark on her character and personality.

“Clara Schumann’s life and music has fascinated me since I was in college,” Song said. “Born as a child prodigy, Clara is considered to be one of the most distinguished pianists of her time. She was also one of the first pianists who performed a piano recital from memory.”

Schumann composted “Piano Trio” in 1846 while traversing personal hardships—her husband, Robert Schumann, was extremely ill and Schumann suffered a miscarriage.

“It’s quite remarkable she could complete this piece during one of the most difficult times in her life,” Song said.

The evening will feature Clara Schumann’s “Piano Trio” in G Minor along with “Violin Sonata No. 1” by Robert Schumann and “Violin Sonata No. 1” by Johannes Brahms, who developed a close relationship with Clara near the end of Robert’s life.

“I hope we can make the audience connect with Clara Schumann, the composer, the pianist and such an amazing human being who always embraced hardships in life and never gave up,” Song said. “Swang, Oliver and I are very much looking forward to celebrate Clara’s 200th anniversary and to share with our audience members the most loving and dynamic relationship between these three composers.”