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Schumann Symphony No 3

Robert Schumann was rarely as happy as he was while traversing the countryside around the Rhine river. This is audible in his third symphony, performed here by the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra under the baton of Chief Conductor Sakari Oramo.

In 1850, Robert Schumann accepted an offer to serve as music director in the city of Düsseldorf. He was incredibly enthusiastic and found the city’s people to be both outgoing and optimistic. He was also captivated by the Rhine river, which runs through the city.

Ten years earlier, he had set to music Heinrich Heine’s poem “Im Rhein”, which is a tribute to the river and the reflection of the Cologne Cathedral in its waters. Schumann subsequently took the train to Cologne to see it for himself. And in his new hometown of Düsseldorf, he often took walks along the water with his wife, Clara.

Inspired by these experiences and the generous light and warmth of the Rhineland, in just over a month he composed Symphony No. 3, which is also called the Rhenish. In the fourth movement, we can even picture how the magnificent cathedral in Cologne is reflected in the water of the Rhine. Schumann conducted the premiere performance himself at a concert on 6 February in Düsseldorf. The symphony was an instant success.

  • The music

  • Robert Schumann Symphony No 3
  • Participants

  • Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra
  • Sakari Oramo conductor
  • Filmed in March 2017.
  • The video is approximately 32 minutes long.