Music from Schubert’s Final Years The last years of Austrian composer Franz Schubert (1797-1828) were creatively bountiful, although he was battling illness. The pulse of his genius under duress, when he knew his days were limited, brought on a rapidity of new compositions that seemed incredible even to those who were closest to him. Yet the works Schubert brought to fruition at that time were among the most life-enhancing for him as composer and for us as listeners.
Through two class meetings, CDs, and YouTube, we will draw from the following of Schubert’s late works of 1825-1828: The Great C Major symphony, The B Flat Piano Trio, songs from his year of the Winter’s Journey, and from his Swansong year of 1828, the B Flat Piano Sonata, his Impromptus and Moments Musicaux, the Fantasie Duet in F Minor, the Mass in E Flat, and the String Quintet in C. The following topics will also be highlighted: (1) Schubert’s circle of friends, (2) his surviving letters that provide insight, (3) his struggles to publish, and (4) significant events in his last three years. Optional readings will be made available.
The third meeting will be a free live public concert of mixed instrumental and vocal works that in Schubert’s day was called a Schubertiade. Guest Austrian faculty pianist from The University of Vienna, Anna Wagner, will play Impromptus, and WIU Mezzo-Soprano Emeritus Marietta Dean will sing from the Swansong (Schwanengesang) and other Schubert Lieder.
Class sessions: Wednesdays, Feb. 3, 10, and 17 Time: 1:30-3 p.m. Place: Sessions one and two: Spoon River College Community Outreach Center, 2500 E. Jackson St.
Live concert at the First Presbyterian Church, 400 E. Carroll St.
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