28 December 2018
By Ellie Palmer
To celebrate 200 years since the birth of Clara Schumann, Lucy Parham – one of Britain’s finest pianists – will be launching a new show - I, Clara.
The show’s London premiere will be performed at Kings Place as part of the London Piano Festival and the Venus Unwrapped Festival in early October, with actress Dame Harriet Walter as the voice of Clara. Juliet Stevenson, Patricia Hodge, Niamh Cusack, and Joanna David are amongst the other actresses that will take part in forthcoming performances.
Clara Schumann was a hugely successful German pianist and composer during the Romantic era. She changed the format of the solo recital into the one that we know today and she gave over 1,500 concerts during her lifetime. She was the muse to her husband Robert Schumann and to Johannes Brahms. She collaborated with all the great musicians of her time including Mendelssohn and the great violinist Joseph Joachim.
Lucy performing with actor Henry Goodman at London's Wigmore Hall
I, Clara explores the exceptional life of a woman who was a concert pianist, composer, mother of eight children and wife to Robert Schumann. Her story, told in her own words, forms the narrative of this highly anticipated new Composer Portrait. I, Clara will feature solo piano music by Clara Schumann, Brahms, Schumann, Chopin, Liszt and Mendelssohn.
Parham’s original Composer Portrait, Beloved Clara, (which features two actors) is being performed at King’s Place on Friday, 8th March 2019 with narrators Juliet Stevenson and Henry Goodman.
As well as being a renowned pianist, Lucy Parham contributes regularly to Pianist magazine, with her popular Advanced-level ‘How to Play’ column. In our latest issue, she explores Tchaikovsky's January from The Seasons Op 37. Get your copy of our latest issue here.
Of I, Clara, Lucy Parham says,
“I am thrilled to create a new Composer Portrait for 2019. Clara Schumann is an extraordinary musician who has inspired me for many years and to be able to honour her memory during her bicentenary year is a huge privilege. I hope to bring her story to life with help of some wonderful actresses."
More information on I, Clara and all her events can be found here.