Frédéric Chopin

Essay by silverbullet1412Junior High, 9th gradeA+, February 2008

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Fryderyk Franciszek Chopin (later Frédéric Francois Chopin) was one of the most famous and significant composers in the Romantic Period. He was born on March 1st, 1810 in Zelazowa Wola near Warsaw to a French father and a Polish mother. He grew up in Warsaw with his family (parents and three siblings). In Poland, he was widely seen as a child prodigy. People called him the "second Mozart". Chopin played piano when he was four. At the age of six, he started his musical education with the violinist Wojciech Zywny. One year later, he published his first composition, the Polonaise in G minor. He gave his first piano concert when he was eight years old. The Russian tsar once rewarded him with a diamond ring after a performance. He continued studying at the Warsaw Lyceum (1823-1826) and later the Warsaw Conservatory (1826-1829). Joseph Elsner, his teacher, taught him harmony, theory, figured bass and composition.

Despite his great talent, Chopin was very modest. He once said, "...the Official Bulletin declared that the Poles should be as proud of me as the Germans are of Mozart; obvious nonsense. "In 1829, after he graduated from the Warsaw Conservatory, Chopin wanted to become a touring composer/pianist. He travelled to Vienna to perform two pieces that were well received. He returned to Vienna in 1830 and stayed there for eight months. When he heard about the Russian domination of Warsaw, he decided to go to Paris. During the journey, he met Maria Wodzinska in Dresden, a young girl from a wealthy family. However, when her father refused to agree in the marriage, Chopin moved on.

In Paris, he earned his money with teaching. Unfortunately, Chopin was infected with tuberculosis. This set the crown of his lung illness that followed him throughout his life. Soon,