Chopin, Frédéric


Frédéric Chopin is a Polish composer and pianist that for a long time lived in France, almost all of his compositions were written for piano.

The family of Frederick lived in the estate of Count Stanisław Skarbek, where the boy's father served as a home teacher. When the son was born, the family moved to the capital, where Nikolai Chopin got a teacher’s place in the Warsaw Lyceum. Young pianist grew up in the musical family - his father played the flute and violin, and his mother played the piano sang.

When young musician turned 7 years old, his first performance in Warsaw took place. The concert was successful, and very soon the name of Chopin gained fame in the capital. By his 12th birthday, Frédéric had achieved unprecedented performing skills and was not inferior to the best Polish pianists. For this reason, his first teacher, Wojciech Żywny, broke up his studies with the gifted boy, explaining that he could no longer teach him anything. F. Chopin was developing multilaterally. He knew foreign languages, drew well, studied the history of Poland with interest, read fiction; he possessed special artistry. At the age 13, he entered the Lyceum. It was during this period of studying that his talent of a composer and special love for folk music showed up.

Chopin's next period of study was the Higher School of Music. There, the experienced teacher and composer - Józef Elsner, led his classes. Those were the years when Chopin's composing and performing talent reached maturity. At the age of 20, after a successful tour in Vienna, the pianist went on a long concert tour. However, he could not help feeling disquieting apprehensions, which, as it turned out in the future, did not deceive the composer. He wandered off his homeland in perpetuity. Chopin suffer acutely, receiving disturbing news from Poland. At that period, the Polish patriots rebelled against the Russian autocracy In Warsaw. The composer had to stay away. In 1831, Chopin arrived in Paris and remained there until the end of his life. In his affections and in his work, Chopin remained a Pole. Moreover, after his death, the composer bequeathed to take his bones home to Poland.

The first published editions of Chopin's works did not bring him income, and he had to give music lessons for 5-7 hours daily. This work provided him financially, but took a lot of time and effort.

Soon, for many years, Chopin engaged his life with the famous French writer, who worked under the pseudonym George Sand. Over the years, Chopin gave less and less concerts, limiting himself to performing his compositions for a close group of friends. Finally, things were getting better. The publication of Chopin’s compositions no longer encountered obstacles, taking lessons from him was considered a great honor, and hearing his playing was a great piece of luck, accessible only to the elite.

Over the last years, the composer's life was not easy. His friend Jan Matuszynski died. This death was followed by the death of Chopin beloved father. The disagreement and breaking up with George Sand exacerbated his loneliness. During this grievous period, the composer’s lung disease aggravated. Chopin wrote almost nothing; however, he decided to go to London, where the damp climate of England had a detrimental effect on the composer's health. He gave his last concert there and following the doctor’s advice, hurriedly returned to Paris. The last work of the composer was The Mazurka in F minor was the composer’s last work. Hence, he could not perform himself. Chopin died on October 17, 1849.

Source: A. Minakova, S. Minakov "The History of World Music. Genres. Styles. Directions", Library of World Art, Moscow, 2010