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From renowned music critic and musicologist Ernest Newman comes the first of four volumes chronicling the life of legendary German composer Richard Wagner. This first volume takes us through the early years of Richard’s life: his birth in Leipzig; his childhood in Dresden and the sparks of his interest in music, opera, and theater; his musical education, including his studies at University of Leipzig; his early career, accompanied by his first compositions and first money troubles; and his six years spent in Dresden, including his involvement in left-wing politics.
Originally published between 1933 and 1947, Newman’s The Life of Richard Wagner, Volumes I-IV remains a classic work of biography. The culmination of forty years' research on the composer and his works, these books present a detailed portrait of perhaps the most influential, the most controversial and the most frequently reviled composer in the whole history of western music. Newman was aware that no biography can ever claim to be complete or completely accurate: “The biographer can at no stage hope to have reached the final truth. All he can do is to make sure that whatever statement he may make, whatever conclusion he may come to, shall be based on the whole of the evidence available at the time of writing.” In this aim he triumphantly succeeds.