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Wednesday, June 10 2020 00:00

Day 48 - Chopin Waltz in A Minor

Pianist age 11 plays Chopin Waltz in A minor

Polish composer Frederic Chopin (1810 – 1849) was in fragile health for most of his life. His father was French and immigrated to Poland at 16, becoming a French teacher at the Warsaw Lyceum (high school). The father also played flute and violin, while Frederic’s mother played piano and gave lessons to the high school students. By the time Chopin was 7, it was obvious that he was exceptionally gifted musically, and he was already giving public concerts and composing small pieces. 
In 1830, while he was traveling in Europe, there was a popular uprising in Poland which was crushed by authorities. Devastated, Chopin never returned to Poland and ended up settling in France. All of his 230 surviving pieces feature the piano, and almost all are short solo pieces - waltzes, etudes, and Polish dances such as Polonaises and Mazurkas that express his longing for his native land.
Although a brilliant pianist, Chopin did not perform in public much - he preferred to play for small groups of friends, as he felt that his intimate music was more suited for that kind of setting. This waltz was written some time between 1843 and 1848, and probably performed at one of those small gatherings of friends.
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