18th February 2020 - Chrissy Pritchard
Chopin's Scottish Tour
The name Fryderyk Chopin is known to the world, but many would not be aware of his visiting Britain including performances in Scotland in his later years. Chrissy Prichard gave the club a fascinating and comprehensive presentation of this period in the composers life.
Although Polish by birth Chopin favoured France in which to live and work. A talented pupil of his in France, Jane Stirling from a wealthy Scottish family and with good connections, persuaded him to venture to Britain in 1848. Speaking no English and already in poor health he found the journey to Scotland most exhausting, but then found he was almost a trophy item ,being taken to the homes of the great and the good. Calder House, Johnstone Castle, Keir House and Strachur House were some of his venues where kindness and attention were lavished upon him. Too polite to decline, his social programme was very demanding and his TB continued to add to his frail condition.
Concerts in Glasgow and Edinburgh drew reviews that were kinder from the Edinburgh press than that of Glasgow! Although Jane Stirling harboured hopes of a“fuller relationship”, Chopin was not of the same opinion, and would become irritated at all the care and fuss being heaped upon him. Finally returning to his beloved France his condition worsened and at the age of 39 Chopin died in October 1849 leaving a legacy of music that has endured, some reflecting the composers moods, but with the world of music richer for his creatitvity.
Probus Club meets again on 3rd March, the talk will be “Burntisland 1883” Everyone is welcome to come along.
The Club annual outing is on 28th April when we visit The Devil’s porridge Museum, Annan then onto the Peter Pan Museum in Dumfries. (Early booking advised)