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Franz Schubert

Franz Schubert

Franz Schubert's life

Franz Schubert was born in Vienna in 1797. When he was very young his father and his older brother taught him to play the violin and the piano. The family realized Franz's abilities and did everything they could with their little income to give him a good education. He was therefore sent to the Stadtkonvikt in Vienna. Here he met Antonio Salieri who was very impressed by his talent.
Schubert then studied to be a teacher and during the three following years, he taught in his father's school. At this time he wrote a great amount of music. During a couple years he composed two symphonies and between 200 and 300 songs, including the masterpiece "Gretchen am Spinnrade". His songs brought him the first success.
In 1815 he met Franz von Schober, who persuaded him to leave the teaching position and go live with him instead, becoming a free musician. In 1819 he made his first tour together with the friend and singer Vogl. The concerts drew large audiences. In 1821 Schubert managed to publish his first works: 3 songs and 36 dances. He also wrote an opera which was never produced during his lifetime, Alfonso und Estrella. In 1823 he wrote perhaps his most famous work, the Rosamunde theme. But before the year was at end he felt the first signs of an infection, which would later take his life.
He continued writing music, as often as he could, but he got sick with typhoid fever and died in 1829.
In a short lifespan of less than 32 years, Schubert was a prolific composer, writing some 600 Lieder, ten complete or nearly complete symphonies(including the most famous of the incomplete ones, the "Unfinished Symphony"),liturgical music, operas, incidental music and a large body of chamberand solo piano music.

Schubert's Operas

Alfonso und Estrella (written in 1822 but put on stage after his death), Fierrabras (1823) , Die Zwillingsbrüder (The Twin Brothers, 1819).


Schubert's Alfonso und Estrella

In the first decade of 2000, the Teatro Lirico in Cagliari, one of the most lively Italian musical institution, had the great habit of opening the seasons with rare works on their first debut in Italy. 2004 was the time of Alfonso und Estrella by Franz Schubert. Composed between 1821 and 1822, this opera was represented only after his death, in 1854, and there are evidences of his inexperience in opera writing: it is, in fact, a long, fascinating lied, spread out in three acts, with transparent ariosos, pure as only a lied can be.
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