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Chopin and Other Musical Essays

Chopin and Other Musical Essays

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of an idea or two. He himself testified to the "intimate artistic relations" between him and Chopin. Moreover, his praise of Chopin is always pitched in such a high key that it would seem as if praise could no higher go. It was he who first proclaimed Chopin's genius authoritatively, and to this fact he often referred subsequently, with special pride. The very first article in his volumes of criticisms is devoted to Chopin's variations on "La Ci Darem'," published as "opus 2." In those days, Schumann used to give his criticisms a semi-dramatic form. On this occasion he represents his alter ego, Eusebius, as rushing into the room with a new composition, and the exclamation "Hats off, gentlemen! a genius!" He then analyzes the variations in glowing poetic language and rapturously exclaims at the end that "there is genius in every bar." And this was only one of the early works of Chopin, in which he has by no means attained his full powers. Of another quite early work, the second concerto, he w