Robert Schumann’s Advice to Young Musicians

Steven Isserlis

Celebrated cellist Steven Isserlis adds his own extensive commentary to Robert Schumann’s ‘Advice for Young Musicians’, a nineteenth century text that remains a must-read for music students today.

Date Published
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Robert Schumann was far ahead of his time, not least in his attitude to children and young people; his ‘Advice for Young Musicians’, originally created to accompany his famous ‘Album for the Young’, remains as relevant today as when it was written.

Celebrated cellist Steven Isserlis adds his own extensive commentary to Schumann’s words of wisdom. The advice is by turns practical, humorous, and profound, making this volume a must for all aspiring musicians of all ages and standards.

Critic Reviews

With deft prose - clear enough for children, profound enough for professionals - he meditates concisely on Schumann's pointers towards essential musicianship ... No musician or music lover should be without it.

Critic Reviews

No musician or music lover should be without it.

Critic Reviews

This is a book which wears its learning and wisdom lightly, and makes a charming and informative read. It should be essential reading for music lovers everywhere.

Planet Hugill
Critic Reviews

This book is an absolute joy from start to finish. So much so that I read it in one sitting, busily making notes in the margin and nodding my head in agreement.

Critic Reviews

How much musical wisdom can be packed into one slim volume? Isserlis has taken Schumann’s aphorisms for young musicians and set them in a modern context from the point of view of one of today’s outstanding performers. The result is humorous, down-to-earth and quirky.

Richard Fairman
Critic Reviews

Cellist Steven Isserlis, a great Schumann devotee, has adapted the composer's slender volume of aphorisms for the budding musician and added thoughts of his own that amplify them for the 21st century. They are beautifully turned and succinctly expressed. "Nothing great can be achieved in art without enthusiasm," Schumann declares. Isserlis, noting that the business of music can sap that enthusiasm, responds: "That makes it all the more important, then, to remember why we wanted to be musicians in the first place: because music lives in our hearts. And we have to keep it there.

Jessica Duchen

Steven Isserlis enjoys a unique and multi-faceted career as soloist, chamber musician and educator. He appears regularly with the world’s leading orchestras, gives recitals every season in major musical centres, devises fascinating chamber music programmes, performs with many period-instrument ensembles, plays and writes for children, and works with many living composers. He has written two children’s books, and gives masterclasses…

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