Franz Schubert

Franz Schubert:

The Piano and the Power of Friendship

An informal, informative talk




Dr Graham Griffiths, piano






“Schubert was far from being the ‘lone genius’: he surrounded himself with a great variety of talented artists, poets and musicians whom he considered essential to his life and his creativity. He loved them more than his own family.”

  • Performance and discussion of piano miniatures composed by Schubert as ‘pianistic postcards’ for his friends e.g. the Kupelwieser Waltz, the Deutscher Tanz for Anselm Hüttenbrenner and many more.
  • Spot the quote: here, Mozart’s Magic Flute (or is it Bach?); there, Handel’s Messiah (‘Comfort Ye My People’)
  • Artworks on the big screen: Portraits of Schubert’s closest friends, including those who helped him and those who led him astray. Paintings of the composer’s circle making music, playing charades and travelling by horse-drawn carriage across Austria.
  • To end, a performance of the Three Piano Pieces (Impromptus) known as ‘Drei Klavierstücke, D. 946’. Composed in Schubert’s final year (1828) this is a mature masterpiece of great lyrical beauty and enormous power.

[Duration: 75-90 minutes. Piano required. Power-point projector + screen provided.]