For many, Robert Schumann is the most intimate of the Romantic troubadours and lived only 46 years. He was born three months after Chopin in 1810 and died in an insane asylum in 1856.
Schumann began his schooling including rather un-serious piano lessons at age six. At nine, he was stunned when his father took him to hear pianist Ignaz Moscheles. He loved literature and music equally and he immersed himself in the novels of Jean Paul Richter, that was his favorite, and often the morbid German poetry of the day.
On his own, Schumann began dabbling in composition and poetry as early as age 12. He entered the University of Leipzig to study law and seldom went to any classes, devoting much time to reading and sitting at the piano, dreamily improvising.
Schumann's music often has literary implications and, in his case, a fierce autobiographical content.
Romance for Piano, Op. 28: no 2 in F sharp major / Van Cliburn
Theme and Variations for Piano on the name ABEGG, Op. 1 / Clara Haskil
Phantasiestücke for Piano, Op. 12: no 7, Traumes Wirren / Alfred Brendel
Sonata for Piano no 1 in F sharp minor, Op. 11: Aria / Emil Gilels
Posthumous Variation No 2: Symphonic Etude / Claudio Arrau
Sonata for Piano no 3 in F minor, Op. 14 "Concert sans orchestre": First Movement / Vladimir Horowitz
Waldszenen, Op. 82: no 7, Vogel als Prophet / Samuel Feinberg
Clara Wieck Schumann: Soirées musicales, Op. 6: Mazurka / Joseph Kalichstein
Davidsbündlertänze for Piano, Op. 6 / Joseph Kalichstein
Faschingsschwank aus Wien, Op. 26 / Magda Tagliaferro
Faschingsschwank aus Wien, Op. 26 / Alicia De Larrocha
Carnaval, Op. 9: Preambule / Arturo Benedetti Michelangeli