Piano Trios of Fanny Hensel and Clara Schumann

By Sock Siang Thia.

Published by The Arts Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Fanny Hensel and Clara Schumann make an interesting pair for musical comparison. Both received good training as pianists and composers, maintained close ties to prominent composers in the nineteenth century, and sustained a lifelong involvement in music. Their lesser known contributions to the nineteenth century piano music in particular make them an interesting area for study. This paper explores the performance related issues in performing the piano works of these two composers, with focus on their piano trios. It includes a formal analysis of each of the composer’s work carried out from a performer’s perspective. Each analysis will consider key musical elements such as form, melody, dynamics, tempo, texture and colour in order to reach conclusions about the pianistic idioms and expressive intentions of both composers. There will also be a discussion of the interpretative and stylistic issues encountered throughout the course of the research. The outcomes of these processes will combine to inform the preparation of the piano works in order to produce a convincing and stylistically appropriate performance. Performance, therefore, will be both a key tool and a key outcome of the research, leading to an additional body of knowledge about these two significant, but little known composers.

Keywords: Piano Performance, Music Research, Analysis and Interpretation

International Journal of the Arts in Society, Volume 6, Issue 6, pp.117-140. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 17.531MB).

Sock Siang Thia

PhD Candidate, Elder Conservatorium of Music, University of Adelaide, Adelaide, South Australia, Australia

Sock Siang Thia holds a Licentiate Performer’s Diploma in Pianoforte from Trinity College London and received her Bachelor of Applied Arts with Honors in Music from Universiti Malaysia Sarawak. She also graduated with a Master of Music degree in Piano Performance with distinction from the University of Newcastle upon Tyne in United Kingdom. After graduating, she returned to Malaysia and served as a music lecturer at Universiti Malaysia Sarawak. Alongside her full-time teaching appointment at the university, Sock Siang Thia also performed regularly either as a solo musician or with the symphony orchestra in Sarawak. In 2007, Sock Siang Thia was awarded a scholarship by the Malaysian Government to pursue her doctoral degree at the University of Adelaide in Australia. She is currently studying towards a PhD in Performance at the Elder Conservatorium, and her research has as its focus the piano works of Fanny Hensel and Clara Schumann.


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