And happy 200th birthday, Chopin!


In the celebratory brouhaha over Richard Wilbur‘s 90th birthday yesterday, I neglected another important nativity — the 200th anniversary of Fryderyk Franciszek Chopin, who was born in Żelazowa Wola, Poland in 1811. My longstanding fondness is something I blushed to confess in Poland — where it’s somewhat akin to an American announcing John Philip Sousa as a favorite composer. Chopin, whose name was Frenchified to Frédéric François, is a national institution, and therefore a little kitschy among the intelligentsia.

This very languorous Venetian piece of music is my personal favorite. Enjoy Claudio Arrau‘s perfect rendition, and celebrate with me one day late. After all, what’s a day in two centuries?

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One Response to “And happy 200th birthday, Chopin!”

  1. Elena Danielson Says:

    according to wikipedia: Lu Pin, born 1972 in Shanghai, is a Chinese sculptor. Completed her studies at the Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw under the tutelage of professor Janusz Pastwa. Designed the monument to Frederic Chopin in Shanghai’s Zhongshan Park unveiled in 2007.

    Wikipedia claims the Chopin monument in shangahi is larger than the one in Warsaw.