Chopin, Fryderyk Franciszek [Frédéric François]
- Kornel Michałowski
- , revised by Jim Samson
(b Żelazowa Wola, nr Warsaw, March 1, 1810; d Paris, Oct 17, 1849). Polish composer and pianist. He combined a gift for melody, an adventurous harmonic sense, an intuitive and inventive understanding of formal design and a brilliant piano technique in composing a major corpus of piano music. One of the leading 19th-century composers who began a career as a pianist, he abandoned concert life early; but his music represents the quintessence of the Romantic piano tradition and embodies more fully than any other composer’s the expressive and technical characteristics of the instrument.
Chopin was the second of four children born to Mikołaj Chopin and Tekla Justyna Krzyżanowska; according to the register of births his birth date was 22 February, but he and others always gave the date as 1 March. His parents met in ...