December 27, 2020
Kempff Davidsbundlerstänze [sic] while I read.
Found Florence May's book on C. Schumann. linked here
I've always treasured a certain level of ignorance of details of composer biographies, as I find a high value in understanding music from within a somewhat purer method than diving in from external info.
But 1) I feel I'll be quizzed on my knowledge of Schumann because of this album program and 2) I want to learn more of Schumann's Davidsbund concept, as from the general vague sense I have of it, it's symbolic to my thoughts about classical music & its place in today's society...
Before I make further claims, I want to understand his idea of progressive concept of arts/music.
What is he rebelling against with Davidsbund?
I hope I can maintain my original method of interpreting music & keep things separate, whatever I will learn from reading...
It's almost impossible for me to read historical books/biographies.
To be frank, it's so much of a bore compared to the music.
The music is so much more interesting.
I've lost count the amount of times my mind has drifted off to listen to Schumann's music.
With his piano quartet...I hope to play with distinguished artists one day...one of my favorite pieces of chamber music!
I know many read such books to better understand music. It's definitely a custom in academia. But for me personally, reading such books is intended to satisfy my intellectual curiosity, rather than directly enhance my understanding of music. Almost separate pursuits in some sense.
Music itself is so much more revealing...perhaps with the exception of reading letters. I honestly feel terribly invasive & disrespectful to do this, but I did find a collection of Schumann's early letters - edited by Clara.
So I guess it's morally justified & I look forward to reading them. At least there isn't a third-person filter, as is the case of biographies. Unless one makes the philosophical/linguistic argument (which I agree in an impractical sense) that language of written words (not counting translated) is a third-person/some form of mediation between author/composer & meaning/system of words.