Austria has always been known as the birthplace of some of the greatest composers of the 18th and 19th century. Great names such as, Beethoven, Johaan Strauss and Mozart claiming their heritage to Austria’s rolling hills and blue skies. However, a lesser known musical genius was also born in Austria in 1797 1 , Franz Peter Shubert. The prodigy amongst 14 children, of which only five, survived while the other nine died within their very first years. His parents, a well-known parish school teacher by the name of Franz Theodore Schubert was his father while his mother was the daughter of a Silesian master locksmith.
His Father never had any formal training musically, but whatever gifts he did possess he p[assed unto his son with the most fervent passion even if they were only musical basics.
Franz was homely, humble and above all hidden underneath the long shadows that Beethoven and Mozart cast upon his career. Nevertheless, that never impeded Franz from being not only the first great Romantic composer of his time, breaking out of the liturgies of the Baroque era, but an astoundingly prolific and experienced composer of all types of music within his time. He composed more than 600 Lieder, while making paramount contributions to the disciplines of piano, chamber and symphonic repertoires.
Franz begun at the tender age of six, by receiving regular instruction for his father. He was so teeming with talent and genius that he began to attend his fathers school the following year. his father taught him the very basics of the violin while his brother, Ignaz, one of the surviving five, taught him the beauty of the piano. However, by the later months of his 7th year he had already outgrown his teachers...
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...even complete symphonies as well as the two movements of the unfinished symphony a complete sketch of a ninth and arguable fragments of a tenth. Franz Schubert’s music continues to be popular. His major works consist of; two song cycle, Die schone Mullerin and Winterreise, as well as hundreds of individual songs; nine symphonies, notably NO. 8 in B Minor (Unfinished) and No. 9 in C Major (The Great); about 35 chamber works, including Piano Quintet and A Major (The Trout)(Hanning 414). He was truly a great composer of his time. Proving that no shadow, and no humble beginning is to great or to small to achieve immortality, even amongst the greatest of your era.
Frost, Henry. Franz Schubert: A Biography. Sampson, Low, Marston, and CO. London. 1892
Hanning, R. Barbara. Concise History of Western Music. Fourth Edition. New York. Norton & Company Inc. 2010