Johannes Brahms: His Life and Work Analytical Essay by Nicky

Johannes Brahms: His Life and Work
Overview and analysis of the life and music of composer Johannes Brahms.
# 128582 | 1,599 words | 6 sources | MLA | 2010 | US
Published on Jul 28, 2010 in Music Studies (Composers)

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This paper offers a historical overview of the life and work of Johannes Brahms, whose music has been described as difficult to categorize. The paper explains that Brahms' music exists on the cusp of classicism and modernity, leaning toward Romanticism and a throwback to classicism. Some believe, the paper continues, that Brahms combines Bach's austere adherence to form with Beethoven's half-controlled emotionalism. The paper describes Brahms as the last great Romantic composer in an era marked by an increasing shift to less emotional and atonal musical sounds and forms. The paper concludes that although Brahms' may be difficult to love, personally and musically, the fact that his acceptance may vary with conductor's intentions does not reduce his important contributions in musical variation, and his fusion of the Classical and Romantic genres of music.

From the Paper:

"A contemporary of Liszt and Schumann, Brahms' personal life was not characterized by the storminess and scandal of his idol, Beethoven. In fact, he was famous for his rigid and austere temperament, taking walks and meals at the same places and times of day for most of his life. Despite earning a successful living as a composer for most of his life, Brahms lived in a small, rented apartment with a housekeeper even during the greatest years of his success. He never married, and used most of his royalties to help friends, family, and associates. The Hamburg-born composer's youthful poverty might be one reason for his frugality, although Brahms was known for his generosity to those who needed it ("Johannes Brahms biography," 8notes, 2008)."

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Brahms, Johannes. "Symphony No.1" Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra. Conducted by Marek Janowski. Pentatone 2007.
  • Brahms, Johannes. "Symphonies." Conducted by Leonard Bernstein. Vienna Philharmonic. Deutsche Gramophone. 2007.
  • Glesner, Elizabeth Schwarm. "Brahms Symphony No. 1" Classical Music Homepage. Last Revision 10 Oct 2000. [7 Nov 2008]
  • "Johannes Brahms biography." 8Notes. 2008. [7 Nov 2008]
  • Laurson, Jens F. "Aimez-vous Brahms? (Symphony No. 1, op. 68).WETA FM 90.9 Blog.

Cite this Analytical Essay:

APA Format

Johannes Brahms: His Life and Work (2010, July 28) Retrieved March 24, 2023, from

MLA Format

"Johannes Brahms: His Life and Work" 28 July 2010. Web. 24 March. 2023. <>