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CHOPIN IN BRITAIN\ud Chopin's visits to England and Scotland in 1837 and 1848\ud People, places, and activities

By Peter Willis


Academically, Chopin's two visits to Britain in 1837 and 1848 remain unexplored. This thesis aims to rectify this, using extensive published and manuscript material in Edinburgh, London, Paris, Cracow and Warsaw, and topographical and other illustrations. On the first of Chopin's visits, in July 1837, he travelled from Paris to London with Camille Pleyel, whose family firm of Pleyel et Cie manufactured Chopin's favourite pianos. In London for only eleven days, Chopin visited the Broadwoods at No 46 Bryanston Square, went to the opera, and signed contracts with Wessel. On his second visit, in 1848, the year before he died, Chopin spent seven months in England and Scotland at the prompting of his aristocratic Scots pupil, Jane Stirling. In London, he gave recitals for the Duke and Duchess of Sutherland, Mrs Adelaide Sartoris, the Earl of Falmouth, and the Countess of Blessington. On 5 August, accompanied by John Muir Wood, Chopin took the train from Euston to Edinburgh, where he was met by the Stirlings' Polish physician, Dr Adam Lyschifiski. Subsequently, Chopin was a guest at Scottish country seats - notably Calder, Johnstone, Strachur, Wishaw, Keir, and Hamilton Palace. Aside from playing privately for his hosts, Chopin gave public concerts in the Gentlemen's Concert Hall in Manchester, the Merchants' Hall in Glasgow, and the Hopetoun Rooms in Edinburgh. Returning to London on 31 October, Chopin performed in Guildhall, the last concert of his life. On 23 November he left London for Paris, dying there on 17 October the next year. His funeral in the Madeleine was partly financed by Jane Stirling, who later published a seven-volume edition of his music, preserved Chopin memorabilia, studied with his former pupil Thomas Tellefsen, and cherished the composer's memory until her own death in 1859

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Year: 2009
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Provided by: Durham e-Theses

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