Japanese Songs and Other Pieces
Songs/Arias with Slide Show
Galleries and Photography Info
|Multimedia Performance||Past and Upcoming Dates||Bach Programs||Schubert-related Programs|
|Schubert-related Programs||Schubert's 1825 Travel with Photos||"To be Sung on the Water":Songs and Slides|
Franz Peter Schubert was born in Vienna on January 31, 1797. His parents
were not Viennese. His father, Franz Theodor Schubert, came from Neudorf
near Mährisch-Schönberg (Sumperk) in Moravia while his mother, Elisabeth
Vietz Schubert, came from Zuckmantel (Zlate Hory) in Austrian Silesia. Both
places are currently in the Czech Republic.
His birthplace (Schuberts Geburtshaus), located at Nussdorfer Strasse
54 in the Ninth District, was called at the time "Zum roten Krebsen" (Red
Crabs). When Schubert was born, his father was running a school there. The
family is said to have occupied this kitchen (top photo) on the second floor and the
adjoining room (photo below, empty in 1994,). It now houses the Schubert Museum and the
Adalbart Stifter Memorial Rooms.
I visited his birthplace (Description in German with interior photos)for the first time when I went to Vienna as a member of the Second Presbyterian Church Choir in 1992. In the morning of the same day I had toured the Schönbrunn Palace and I arrived at the Schuberts Geburtshaus just before closing. The contrast between the palace chambers I had seen earlier and the small kitchen where Schubert is said to habe been born was so stark that I could hardly sleep that night.
The courtyard shown above is used in fair weather for the "Schubertiade", concerts devoted to Schubert's works. You can see a platform next to the gate in the above photograph. I attended one of them in June, 1994, which became an unforgettable experience. At the intermission, they passed wine glasses around the audience and the Wiener Schubertbund (Vienna Schubert Choral Society) sang one of Schubert's drinking songs. I realized that in the "Schubertiaden" of Schubert's times, this drinking must have been a part of it.
Schubert was born as the fourth surviving son of a school master. It is
known that he was exposed to music at an early age. His oldest brother,
Ignaz, was 12 years older than he was. His family was musical in that his
father taught Franz violin and his brother, Ignaz, taught him note reading
and piano playing. According to a story by his brother, Franz declared
after a few months that he could move on by himself and his knowledge of
music surpassed his brother's quickly. Later he was to learn singing, organ
playing, and music from a choirmaster, Michael Holzer, at the family's church,
a short distance away from his first house on Nussdorferstrasse and also
from his second house on Säulengasse. The church, Lichtenthalerkirche or Schubertkirche, still stands today and bears the plaque shown here (Schubert's Memorial Plaque, © 1994 Tomoko Yamamoto). In Schubert's times, however, the church had only one tower. The Schubert family moved to the house on Säulengasse 3 (called "Zum schwarzen Rössel", Black Horse in English) in 1801. Franz Schubert spent his early childhood in this second house until he entered the Stadtkonvikt (Imperial Boarding School, the building on the right in the photo below) as a boy soprano at the age 11.