9/29 Schumann

The Life and Love ofRobert and Clara Schumann

The story of Robert and Clara Schumann is one of the most beautiful and ultimately tragic stories ever told. The trials they endured going into their marriage, the joys and difficulties of their life together, and ultimately his mental breakdown and death combine to tell one of the Romantic era’s great sagas. Peter and Kathleen Van De Graaff become the two characters as they take you through Robert and Clara’s beautiful and heart-breaking experiences, told with both music and words.


Peter and Kathleen Van De Graaff

Soprano Kathleen and bass-baritone Peter Van De Graaff have performed together and/or separately throughout the country and the world including concerts with the Israeli Chamber Orchestra in Tel Aviv, the Budapest Concert Orchestra, the Czech National Symphony and the Czech State Philharmonic in Prague, Brno and Krakow, Poland. They recently returned from Japan where they were featured as part of a concert series, and gave the Asian premiere of Hasse's intermezzo "Miride e Damari." In the Midwest, they have been seen with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Chicago Opera Theater, Florentine Opera, Lincoln Opera, Chicago Chamber Opera, Music of the Baroque, Milwaukee Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago, Chicago String Ensemble and many, many other groups. Elsewhere in the country, their engagements include the Houston Symphony, San Antonio Symphony, Utah Symphony, Rochester Opera, Washington/Idaho Symphony, Louisiana Philharmonic and the Jackson, Michigan Symphony. They have sung under the batons of Pierre Boulez, Robert Page, Joseph Silverstein, Paul Freeman, Thomas Wikman, Christopher Wilkins and Alan Heatherington, among others.

Kathleen and Peter have traveled throughout Europe obtaining scores of early 18th Century chamber operas called "intermezzi. " They have subsequently gained notoriety as specialists in this area, performing them throughout the United States, as well as on live broadcasts over WFMT, Chicago, including four North American premieres, and the Asian premiere already mentioned. They have given the modern premieres of many intermezzi, and performed them as part of the St. Louis Early Music Festival, the Costa Rica International Music Festival, the Bloomington Early Music Festival, the Teton Festival in Jackson, WY for Music of the Baroque, and at the Manitou Music Series in Michigan.