In 2012-13 Jonathan Biss undertook Schumann: Under the Influence, an international initiative including more than 30 concerts. Three years in the making, Schumann: Under the Influence sought to examine the work of Robert Schumann and the musical influences on him. For these concerts Biss curated and performed a range of music — including Schumann’s Gesänge der Frühe and Davidsbündlertänze, Janáček’s Selections from On an Overgrown Path, and Mozart’s Minuet in D Major, K. 355 — to critical praise and popular acclaim. Biss’s e-book on the subject of Schumann, A Pianist Under the Influence, can be purchased on Amazon.
“My feelings for this music go beyond love, though there’s also plenty of that: silly as it may sound, I feel somehow protective of him. This is first of all because his music is so deeply personal and achingly vulnerable that it tends to inspire these feelings in those who respond deeply to his music. But equally, it comes from my sense that for a composer of his stature, he is subject to a remarkable number of misconceptions, and to an attitude that can at times be downright condescending. I wanted to show Schumann’s music exactly as it is — deeply poetic, fragile, obsessive, evocative, whimsical, internal.”
Jonathan Biss, Elias String Quartet