free Chopin in Paris: The Life and Times of the Romantic ComposerAuthor Tad Szulc –

Very interesting, however, the author didn t seem tocapture the personality of a composer who wrote such sensitive music. So incredibly dry and difficult to finish I was hoping this would bring Chopin alive, but it only made him seem Dead. Chopin In Paris Introduces The Most Important Musical And Literary Figures Of Fryderyk Chopin S Day In A Glittering Story Of The Romantic Era During Chopin S Eighteen Years In Paris, Lasting Nearly Half His Short Life, He Shone At The Center Of The Immensely Talented Artists Who Were Defining Their Time Hugo, Balzac, Stendhal, Delacroix, Liszt, Berlioz, And, Of Course, George Sand, A Rebel Feminist Writer Who Became Chopin S Lover And Protector Tad Szulc, The Author Of Fidel And Pope John Paul II, Approaches His Subject With Imagination And Insight, Drawing Extensively On Diaries, Memoirs, Correspondence, And The Composer S Own Journal, Portions Of Which Appear Here For The First Time In English He Uses Contemporary Sources To Chronicle Chopin S Meteoric Rise In His Native Poland, An Ascent That Had Brought Him To Play Before The Reigning Russian Grand Duke At The Age Of Eight He Left His Homeland When He Was Eighteen, Just Before Warsaw S Patriotic Uprising Was Crushed By The Tsar S Armies Carrying The Memories Of Poland And Its Folk Music That Would Later Surface In His Polonaises And Mazurkas, Chopin Traveled To Vienna There He Established His Reputation In The Most Demanding City Of Europe But Chopin Soon Left For Paris, Where His Extraordinary Creative Powers Would Come To Fruition Amid The Revolutions Roiling Much Of Europe He Quickly Gained Fame And A Circle Of Powerful Friends And Acquaintances Ranging From Rothschild, The Banker, To Karl Marx Distinguished By His Fastidious Dress And The Wracking Cough That Would Cut Short His Life, Chopin Spent His Days Composing And Giving Piano Lessons To A Select Group Of Students His Evenings Were Spent At The Keyboard, Playing For His Friends It Was At One Of These Chopin Gatherings That He Met George Sand, Nine Years His Senior Through Their Long And Often Stormy Relationship, Chopin Enjoyed His Richest Creative Period As She Wrote Dozens Of Novels, He Composed Furiously Both Were Compulsive Creators After Their Affair Unraveled, Chopin Became The Prot G Of Jane Stirling, A Wealthy Scotswoman, Who Paraded Him In His Final Year Across England And Scotland To Play For The Aristocracy And Even Queen Victoria In , At The Age Of Thirty Nine, Chopin Succumbed To The Tuberculosis That Had Plagued Him From Childhood Chopin In Paris Is An Illuminating Biography Of A Tragic Figure Who Was One Of The Most Important Composers Of All Time Szulc Brings To Life The Complex, Contradictory Genius Whose Works Will Live Forever It Is Compelling Reading About An Exciting Epoch Of European History, Culture, And Music And About One Of The Great Love Dramas Of The Nineteenth Century If you like Chopin and Paris, especially its history and then artists who have made it a cultural capitol, then this is a book for you It s very well researched by Szulc, a former NY Times reporter born in Poland and obviously familiar with Polish and French, as well as musical theory He s written a wonderful history of Paris in the first half of the 19th century and an account of the personal, political, and aesthetic lives of Chopin, George Sand, who lived with Chopin for ten years, and the circle of artsy beautiful people who surrounded them during their time together It s a book that moves and teaches at the same time. Chopin s life was not as fascinating as Liszt s, and not as sordid as Tchaikovsky s A shy man who played piano in front of a public audience only a handful of times in his life No wife, no children, and died at the age of 39 An interesting read if you like his music The focus is only on his adult life in Paris so if you are interested in his childhood in Poland this is not the book for you. An interesting read, but peppered throughout with conjecture presented as fact and unfortunate elements of the author s discomfort with anything resembling queerness. You will fall in love with Chopin reading this book It was a little slow going for me at first with lots of names and information But his personality starts to shine through with the appearance of George Sand I enjoyed his subtle sense of humor Unknowingly I started reading this on the day after the date of his death, which was Oct 17. Features a detailed biography of Fryderyk Chopin s life It includes everything about Frycek, from birth to death Shows the whole life of this amazing composer it almost feels like you are living with him To me, a great biography brings the subject to life, a rarity in the genre and no simple task Doris Kearns Goodwin succeeded in doing so with Lincoln in Team of Rivals David McCullough made John Adams come alive in his famous bio of the 2nd President I cannot say the same for Tad Szulc s bio of Chopin The reader mainly learns that Chopin was sickly and moody but could be charming which I already knew Szulc basically tells the entire story by quoting letters, many of them mundane Do I really need to read long lists of items that Chopin repeatedly instructed one of his friends to pick up for him Instead of delving into his subject, Szulc seems content to just outline what Chopin did from week to week, much of it not terribly fascinating On the plus side, he did a fairly decent job of explaining Chopin s turbulent affair with author George Sand but again, the narrative was spoiled by the use of letters Obviously, I was disappointed particularly because the reviews promised a personal approach to Chopin s years in Paris thestrangecourtshipofabigailbird Really enjoyed this It wasn t just a biography of Chopin it was an account of his times and the people he knew Now I want to read some of George Sand s work and finally finish Un hiver a Majorque which I started years ago.