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Franz Peter Schubert 1797-1828

 
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Arnold1740-1802 Gluck1714-1787
Beethoven 1770-1827  
Boccherini1743-1805 Haydn1732-1809
Clementi1752-1832 Hummel1778-1837
Czerny1794-1857 Mozart1756-1791
Diabelli1781-1858 Rossini1792-1868
Dussek1760-1812 Schubert1797-1828
Field1782-1837 Weber1786-1826
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Franz Peter Schubert was born in Vienna. He wrote 600 Lieder, 9 symphonies,liturgical, chamber and piano music as well as operas and incidental music.

Interest in Schubert's work increased dramatically in the decades following his early death at the age of thirty-one. Composers like Franz Liszt,Robert Schumann and Felix Mendelssohn discovered, collected, and championed his works in the 19th century. Franz Schubert is now widely considered to be one of the greatest of all composers.

Franz Schubert was born into a musical family, and received formal musical training through much of his childhood. While Schubert had a close circle of friends and associates who admired his work (amongst them the prominent singer Johann Michael Vogl), wide appreciation of his music during his lifetime was limited at best. He was never able to secure adequate permanent employment, and for most of his career he relied on the support of friends and family. He made some money from published works, and occasionally gave private musical instruction.

 

 

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At the age of five, Schubert began receiving regular instruction from his father and a year later was enrolled at his father's school. His formal musical education also began around the same time. His father continued to teach him the basics of the violin, and his brother Ignaz gave him piano lessons. At 7, Schubert began receiving lessons from Michael Holzer, the local church organist and choirmaster.  He also played the viola in the family string quartet, with brothers Ferdinand and Ignaz on violin and his father on the cello. Schubert wrote many of his early string quartets for this ensemble.

Schubert first came to the attention of Antonio Salieri, then Vienna's leading musical authority, in 1804, when his vocal talent was recognized.In October 1808, he became a pupil at the Stadtkonvikt (Imperial seminary) through a choir scholarship. At the Stadtkonvikt, Schubert was introduced to the overtures and symphonies of Mozart. His exposure to these pieces and various lighter compositions, combined with his occasional visits to the opera set the foundation for his greater musical knowledge.One important musical influence came from the songs of Johann Rudolf Zumsteeg, who was an important Lied composer of the time. 

Schubert was occasionally permitted to lead the Stadtkonvikt's orchestra, and  Salieri decided to begin training him privately in musical composition and theory in these years. During the remainder of his stay at the Stadtkonvikt he wrote a good deal of chamber music, several songs, some miscellaneous pieces for the pianoforte and, among his more ambitious efforts, a Kyrie (D. 31) and Salve Regina (D. 27), an octet for wind instruments and his first symphony.

In 1814, he entered his father's school as teacher of the youngest students. There were, however, other interests to compensate. He continued to receive private lessons in composition from Salieri until 1817.

 

In 1814, Schubert met a young soprano named Therese Grob, the daughter of a local silk manufacturer. Several of his songs (Salve Regina and Tantum Ergo) were composed for her voice, and she also performed in the premiere of his first Mass (D. 105) in September1814. Schubert intended to marry Therese, but was hindered by the harsh marriage consent law of 1815, which required the ability to show the means to support a family. In November 1816, after failing to gain a position at Laibach, Schubert sent Grob's brother Heinrich a collection of songs, which were retained by her family into the 20th century

In early 1817, Schubert's friend, Schober introduced him to Johann Michael Vogl, a prominent baritone twenty years Schubert's senior. Vogl, for whom Schubert went on to write a great many songs, became one of Schubert's main proponents in Viennese musical circles. He also met Joseph Hüttenbrenner (brother to Anselm), who also played a role in promoting Schubert's music. These, and an increasing circle of friends and musicians, became responsible for promoting, collecting, and, after his death, preserving, his work

From 1826 to 1828 Schubert resided continuously in Vienna, except for a brief visit to Graz in 1827.  The works of his last two years reveal a composer increasingly meditating on the darker side of the human psyche and human relationships, and with a deeper sense of spiritual awareness and conception of the 'beyond'. He reaches extraordinary depths in several chillingly dark songs of this period, especially in the larger cycles. For example, the song Der Doppelgänger reaching an extraordinary climax, conveying madness at the realization of rejection and imminent death - a stark and visionary picture in sound and words that had been prefigured a year before by "Der Leiermann" (The Hurdy-Gurdy Man) at the end of Der Winterreise - and yet the composer is able to touch repose and communion with the infinite in the almost timeless ebb and flow of the String Quintet and his last three piano sonatas, moving between joyful, vibrant poetry and remote introspection. Even in large-scale works he was sometimes using increasingly sparse textures

In the midst of this creative activity, his health deteriorated. The cause of his death was officially diagnosed as typhoid fever, though other theories have been proposed, including the tertiary stage of syphilis.By the late 1820s Schubert's health was failing and he confided to some friends that he feared that he was near death.

Schubert died in Vienna, at age 31, on November 19, 1828, at the apartment of his brother Ferdinand. By his own request, he was buried next to Beethoven, whom he had admired all his life, in the village cemetery of Währing. n 1888, both Schubert's and Beethoven's graves were moved to theZentralfriedhof, where they can now be found next to those of Johann Strauss II and Johannes Brahms.

 

 

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