A Journey through Romanticism
A dazzling exploration of Romantic music unlike any other, from one of the most exciting writers about classical music
Chopin's Piano begins in November 1838, when George Sand, her children and Frederick Chopin took a boat to Majorca for the winter. It describes their circumstances there, and how Chopin completed one of the most revolutionary works in the history of music - his Preludes - on 'a small Mallorquin piano' which he picked up when they arrived and carted up to the monastery in the mountains where he and Sand lodged. Kildea traces the history of the Preludes, their pianists, their interpretations, and the history of the Mallorquin piano itself, to find an unexpected path through the history of romantic music - via Wanda Landowska in Berlin in 1913, Paris in 1940-41 when the Nazis seized the piano, down to the end of romantic music. It is an astonishing narrative and detective story, an unclassifiable and thrilling book, which explores in an original way the changing meaning of music through time.