WSC Music Department Presents "The Life and Love of Robert and Clara Schumann," Sept. 29
Sept. 25, 2009 -- The Western State College Department of Music will present soprano Kathleen Van De Graaff, bass-baritone Peter Van De Graaff, and pianist Susan Grace in "The Life and Love of Robert and Clara Schumann" in Quigley Recital Hall Tuesday, Sept. 29 at 7:30 p.m.
There is no admission fee for the evening of celebration of the Schumanns’ lives and also the 200th anniversary of Robert Schumann's birth which is June 8, 1810. The public also is invited to attend a master class with WSC voice students presented by the Van De Graaffs earlier the same day at 12:30 p.m. in Quigley Recital Hall.
The courtship and marriage of Robert and Clara Schumann is one of the most poignant love stories in human history. As two of the greatest musicians of their day, they wrote together a song cycle for their one year anniversary gift to each other called Frühlingsliebe, or Springtime of Love, which contains some of their most beautiful songs and duets. The Van De Graaffs will present a dramatization of the Schumanns’ lives in a newly written presentation which includes their courtship, their love, their life together, and their beautiful music. This show is staged and costumed with authentic costumes of the period. The complete song cycle, Frühlingsliebe, will be sung as well as many of the songs from the Myrthen Lieder, which was written by Robert for their wedding.
The Van De Graaffs have performed together throughout the country and the world including concerts with many orchestras, ensembles, and festivals. They were featured as part of a concert series in Japan and gave the Asian premiere of Hasse's intermezzo "Miride e Damari." This past summer, the Mozart year, they were invited to participate at the International Vocal Symposium in Salzburg, Austria where they lectured about the genre and gave examples from intermezzi. Kathleen and Peter have traveled throughout Europe obtaining scores of early eighteenth-century comic chamber operas called "intermezzi." They have subsequently gained notoriety as specialists in this area, performing them throughout the United States, including a Quigley Hall performance several years ago, live broadcasts over WFMT Chicago, three North American premieres, and the Asian premiere already mentioned. Their recording of two chamber operas with their ensemble "The Comic Intermezzo" was released in January 2007 on the Naxos International Record Label.