Like no other composer Robert Schumann’s life and work is perfectly suited for children and teenagers as he had eight children of his own and wrote a lot of compositions for young people. The museum’s approach reaches far beyond music in a narrow sense, offering links to literature and fine arts as well.
Children and teenagers
Thematic tours featuring creative activities
Musical instruments at the Robert Schumann House
Robert Schumann’s hometown is not far away from the Vogtland region, one of the most important centres of musical instrument making around the world. The Westsächsische Hochschule - University of Applied Sciences Zwickau is the only German university offering a course of study in this area. As a composer Robert Schumann was always interested in technical innovations. This is shown by several examples when strolling through the exhibition. His wife Clara Schumann was the most important female pianist of the 19th century. Hence, the permanent exhibition presents seven original keyboard instruments of this time and explains their differing piano actions with the help of mechanical models. Subsequently visitors have the possibility to make a simple instrument of their own, either a wind or plucked instrument or an idiophone, test it and take it home.
Letter writing as in the times of Schumann
The Robert Schumann House owns a huge stock of autograph letters by Robert and Clara Schumann. The permanent exhibition presents some of the most precious items such as a letter written by the seven-year-old Robert to his mother on New Year’s Day. The Schumann Letters Edition, a project of the Robert Schumann House Zwickau, encompasses the complete correspondence of Robert and Clara Schumann, published in more than 50 volumes since 2008. But how did the people of the 19th century actually write? With a pen (in the beginning simple quills, later on pens made of steel) and ink. One of the museum’s treasures: An ink recipe created by the famous poet Jean Paul. The common German handwriting of these times differs in many points from the Latin letters introduced in German schools in 1942 and used until today. Finally a letter was folded in order to note the address and was sealed. Though, by the middle of the 19th century, the first envelopes and stamps were used.
Thematic tours featuring further topics
- Schumann and children (4 to 12 years)
- Schumann quiz (8 to 18 years)
- ‚More strength than six boys‘ — Clara Wieck-Schumann (8 to 18 years)
- Schumann and the poets (9 to 18 years)
- Schumann and his musical instruments (8 to 18 years)
- Secret messages (8 to 15 years)
- Hoffmann von Fallersleben. A children’s song writer and contemporary of Schumann (3 to 6 years)