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Remembering Chopin

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Thursday, May 15, 2014

In 1999, there were numerous celebrations of the composer Frederic Chopin, who had died 150 years earlier in 1849.  WNYC's Sara Fishko took the moment to ponder, in this archival edition of Fishko Files, the question of what Chopin actually did for music.

WNYC Production Credits

Mix Engineer: Wayne Shulmister

Associate Producer: Laura Mayer

WNYC Newsroom Editor: Karen Frillmann

Comments [2]

Kenneth Bennett Lane, Lake Hiawatha, NJ from Richard Wagner Music Drama Institute, Boonton, NJ


CHOPIN was the most prolific composer for the piano inspiring romantic allusions. In his day and for many more years girls were expected to take up the piano to be the center of attraction, to accompany others and to entertain. The guitar was not then as it is now the typical choice of an inspiring musician. Considering the breadth of his compositions for the piano and his own virtuoso ability with the instrument one wonders how with his frail constitution he had the stamina for his efforts. As a Wagnerian heldentenor and teacher of all the Wagner operatic roles, I can appreciate the necessity for a sturdy healthy physique. A pianist may not need the same total body health, but still there is a stamina factor.

Sep. 20 2014 06:14 PM
Kenneth Bennett Lane, Lake Hiawatha, NJ from Richard Wagner Music Drama Institute, Boonton, NJ

How could one man so completely take hold of the world's romantic impulses with compositions for the piano as Chopin has achieved with sterling success. Wondrous! In those days the guitar was not the obvious choice for music students as it is today. Every female was encouraged by her parents to rake piano lessons so as to be indispensable to entertaining, to accompanying and to be the center of attraction. Throughout his short life Chopin was always from his youth to his last days in frail health. His pianistic virtuosity and his cornucopia of literature for the piano is astounding in light of his physical frailty.

Sep. 20 2014 05:46 PM

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