Musical Borrowing
An Annotated Bibliography

Individual record

[+] Harley, Maria Anna, Susan Marie Praeder, and Louis Pomey. “Chopin and Women Composers: Collaborations, Imitations, and Inspirations.” The Polish Review 45 (2000): 29-50.

Maria Szymanowksa’s piano music influenced Chopin as a young composer, and Chopin’s works subsequently influenced the piano works by Pauline Viardot-Garcia and Clara Schumann. Chopin, who attended a number of Szymanowska’s concerts, adopted all of Szymanowska’s musical genres, and there are several musical and stylistic similarities between Chopin’s Études and Szymanowska’s Vingt exercises et preludes. Both composers’ piano works share textural similarities, but Szymanowska’s mazurkas, which were written to accompany salon dances, are not as virtuosic as Chopin’s. Towards the end of Chopin’s life, Pauline Viardot-Garcia arranged fifteen of Chopin’s mazurkas for voice, and it is likely that Chopin’s Mazurka in E minor, Op. 41, No. 2, was the source for some of her settings. Clara Schumann also composed works in several of the genres that Chopin frequently composed in, such as the mazurka and polonaise. Her Piano Concerto in A minor, Op. 7, may have been inspired by the Adagio from Chopin’s “La ci darem la mano” Variations, Op. 2. Schumann also borrowed gestures, textures, accompaniment styles, and fragments of several themes from Chopin’s piano works. For example, the “sighing” motive of a descending fourth in Schumann’s Soirees musicales, Op. 6 also appears in Chopin’s Mazurka in G minor, Op. 24, No. 1.

Works: Chopin: Nocturne in E-flat major, Op. 9, No. 2 (31), Etude, Op. 10, No. 2 (31), Etude in C major, Op. 10, No. 7 (31), Etude in A-flat major, Op. 25, No. 1 (31), Prelude in E-flat major, Op. 28, No. 19 (31); Pauline Viardot-Garcia: L’Oiselet (34); Clara Schumann: Piano Concerto in A minor, Op. 7 (40), Soirees Musicales, Op. 6 (41), Caprices en forme de valse, Op. 2 (41), Valses Romantiques, Op. 4 (41), Rondo in B minor (41), Souvenir de Vienne, Op. 9 (41), Variations de concert sur la cavatine du Pirate de Bellini, Op. 8 (41), Piano Concerto in A minor, Op. 7 (42).

Sources: Maria Szymanowska: Etude in D minor (31), Etude No. 15 in C major (31), Etude No. 17 in B-flat major (31), Etude No. 8 in E-flat major (31), Nocturne in B-flat major (31); Chopin: Mazurka in E minor, Op. 41, No. 2 (34), Mazurka, Op. 68, No. 2 (34), Variations, Op. 2 (41-42), Mazurka in G minor, Op. 6, No. 6 (41), Mazurka in G minor, Op. 24, No. 1 (41), Mazurka in B major, Op. 7, No. 1 (41), Mazurka in E major, Op. 6, No. 3 (41), Mazurka in F-sharp minor, Op. 6, No. 1 (42), Mazurka in E minor, Op. 17, No. 2 (42).

Index Classifications: 1800s

Contributed by: Cynthia Dretel, Matthew G. Leone

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