He was the son of a double-bass player, Johann Jakob Brahms (1806-1872) and Johanna Henrika Christiane (1789-1865). Brahms was sandwiched between two of his siblings. His musical career kicked off at an early age as he received…
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His education began in 1835 when he enrolled at Heinrich Friedrich, elementary school. In 1844, he joined a private secondary school managed by Johann Friedrich Hoffman where he conducted his studies until 1847. He loved Bach and Beethoven and his audience marveled as they watched him play the piano and even conquered that his playing of the Bach was masterful and came from the heart (Van Camp, Leonard, Ottley, Jerold 156). And by 1846, he was earning money for playing piano in some local entertainment joints. Brahms initially became renowned as a composer in the chamber of music, a fact that has made some of his critics to place him in the conservative German camp of Schumann. However, it was his inclination to write in a chamber music style while stressing on thematic-motive development, and logical forms that earned him fame as an accomplished composer of brain music. Chamber music was critical for Brahms compositional output at every level during his auspicious career (Steib 96).
Brahms was self-conscious of his technical abilities and worked effortlessly to improve them (Littlewood 344). He started composing at an early age, but he was so self-critical and did not want to acknowledge his effort by putting his name on his compositions. In 1848, Brahms attended a performance by Joseph Joachim in Hamburg Philharmonic Orchestra of Beethoven’s Violin Concert though he did not meet him until 1853. In the same year, Brahms held his first own concert, where he played music composed by; Theo Dohker, Jacob Rosenhain, Marxen, Bach, and Herz. Other artists who performed at the event included Franziske Cornet-Kiel and her daughter Adele. In 1849, Brahms began to write potpourris for music journalist August Cranz under the alias G.W. Marks. The same year he held his second own concert where he performed music by; Sonata, C. Mayer while Cornet-Kiel and her daughter participate yet again. He
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