Schumann, Clara

Schumann, Clara

biographical name


Robert and Clara Schumann, lithograph by J. Hofelich—The Bettmann Archive

(born Sept. 13, 1819, Leipzig, Saxony—died May 20, 1896, Frankfurt am Main, Ger.) German pianist. Trained by her father, the noted piano teacher Friedrich Wieck (1785–1873), she debuted as a prodigy with Leipzig's Gewandhaus Orchestra in 1830, and then she toured for two years. By 1835 she had fallen in love with Robert Schumann, the Wiecks' boarder since 1830. When Clara turned 21 years old, they eloped against her father's wishes. Her artistic stature had already been established by her tours, but the birth of eight children limited her career, and she stopped writing music in 1853 after showing considerable promise as a composer. Robert's mental deterioration led to her resuming touring full-time; she retired from performing and teaching in the 1890s because of ill health. From 1853 she had a close lifelong relationship with Johannes Brahms.


Schumann, Clara orig. Clara Josephine Wieck

This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise.
For the full entry on Schumann, Clara, visit

Seen & Heard

What made you look up Schumann, Clara? Please tell us what you were reading, watching or discussing that led you here.