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1. Cited in Lewis Lockwood (1982):‘ “Eroica” Perspectives: Strategy and Design in the First Movement.’ In Alan Tyson, (ed), Beethoven Studies 3. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 90.

  • 2.

    This is how Brahms had described the three Intermezzi to Rudolph van der Legen. (Keys, 1989:

  • 242)


  • 3.

    Around the time of composition of the Op. 117 Intermezzi, Brahms was in the middle of an ongoing

quarrel with Clara Schumann over the publication of Schumann’s D Minor Symphony, in its original and revised version. This led to an exchange of very bitter letters. It seems that after Clara received the pieces, all was forgotten, as she wrote in her journal: ‘In these pieces I at last feel musical life stir again in my soul....How they make one forget much of the suffering he has caused one.’ From Berthold Litzmann, Clara Schumann: An Artist’s Life Based on Material Found in Diaries and Letters. Vol II. Trans from the 5th ed by Grace E. Hadow. New York: Vienna House, 1972, 420, cited in Jan Swafford

  • (1999)

    : Johannes Brahms, A Biography. London: Papermac, Macmillan Publisher’s Ltd., 583.

  • 4.

    Brahms associated himself with E. T. A. Hoffmann’s fictional character, the romantic, half-mad

Kapellmeister, Johannes Kreisler. In his Schumann Variations Op. 9, he had followed Schumann’s Op. 9 Carnaval by signing the more vigorous and ardent variations as Kreisler, and the more lyrical ones B for Brahms. He copied down quotations from books he read into a notebook which he called “The Young Kreisler’s Treasure Chest”, starting in his teenage years and continuing until his death. The Young Kreisler also echoed Goethe’s Sorrows of Young Werther, an iconic book of the era. Werther was another romantic character whom Brahms identified with; one who suffered a frustrated passion for the wife of a friend.

  • 5.

    The term ‘holograph’ is used to describe manuscripts of Brahms which were not signed by him.

  • 6.

    Cited in Cai, 1986:177.

  • 7.

    Cited in Cai: 270. In fact, only two concert programmes between 1893-1900 in the Gesellschaft

archive in Vienna included a complete performance of any of the four late opuses. (Cai: 272).

8. From Gustav Jenner, Johannes Johannes Brahms als mensch, Lehrer und Künstler: Studien und Erlebnisse. Marburg, 1905, p. 60. Trans. by Carl Schachter, 1983. Cited in Roger Kamien, (2000): ‘Phrase, period, theme.’ In Glenn Stanley (ed.), The Cambridge Companion to Beethoven. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, p. 64.

9. This, along with other ways in which Brahms alters conventional compositional practices is discussed in Charles Rosen (1990): ‘Brahms the Subversive.’ In George Bozarth ed., Brahms Studies: Analytical and Historical Perspectives. Oxford: Clarendon Press, pp. 114-119.

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