Prague Concert Life, 1850-1881


Robert Alexander Schumann

Schumann, Robert Alexander (1810-1856). German composer and music critic. Early studies to become a pianist were abandoned after injury to pursue a career as a composer. Much of his career was passed in Dresden and Leipzig where he worked as composer, conductor and music critic. During the later 1850s and during the 1860s various larger-scale works by Schumann were performed in Prague to mixed receptions. Local critics were divided about his music and his accomplishments as a composer; most reviews were coloured by awareness of Schumann’s later illness which impacted upon critical perceptions of his musical style. According to contemporary newspaper and periodical reports, Prague audiences also seemed split – and sometimes ambivalant – in their reaction to his works.

Schumann’s output spanned most major nineteenth-century musical genres, and included many works for pianoforte and songs, vocal works, chamber and orchestral music, sacred works, opera and other large-scale orchestral/vocal genres.