“Portrait of Fryderyk Chopin (1810-1949)” by Louis Gallait (1810-1887)
■ In 1830, the last concert by Fryderyk Chopin took place in Warsaw, Poland. Chopin had to leave his native Poland which was under Russian rule at that time. The composer could never return to his homeland but he never forgot about Poland.
■ During his final days, famous Polish composer Fryderyk Chopin, with fawning Parisian women fainting all around him, made the gruesome request that his heart be taken out from his corpse and sent back to his native Poland, knowing very well that his body would never leave France. When he passed, Chopin’s eldest sister, Ludwika, complied with his request, taking the heart before his body could be buried and secreting it back to Poland in a jar of booze. Most likely cognac. Ludwika hid the hearty package under her cloak, avoiding officers and agents that might ask too many questions about the body part she was carrying, and was able to smuggle it to the Holy Cross Church in Warsaw where it was buried beneath a small monument. During World War II, the Nazis, knowing the power the composer’s legacy held over the people, stole the heart (as well as outlawing playing his music). However, after the war they gave it back.
90 notes · View notes
first page of Chopin’s Prelude Op. 28 No. 15 (”raindrop” prelude)
Written in 1838, when Chopin and George Sand stayed in a monastery in Valldemossa, Mallorca. The piece was allegedly inspired by a dream in which he saw himself drowned to death in a lake, raindrops falling rhythmically on his chest.
898 notes · View notes