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A Quiet Life: The Extraordinary Fanny Hensel

Born in 1805, music’s first female composer Fanny Hensel was also a painter and artist. Married to her brother Eduard, her life story has been shrouded in gender-queer mystery.

Biography of Fanny Hensel

Fanny Hensel was born in Hamburg, Germany, on November 14, 1805. She was the second child of five and the only daughter of Veit and Henriette Hensel. Fanny’s banker father was also a successful musician and composer. Her mother died when she was only two years old.
Fanny showed signs of musical talent at an early age and began to study piano and composition when she was eleven. She quickly developed into a skilled pianist. And by the age of sixteen, she had composed several pieces for piano and voice.

Wilhelm Mendelssohn

In 1829 Fanny met Wilhelm Mendelssohn, a young composer, and conductor who would later. Become famous as one of the leading figures of the German Romantic movement. The two became close friends, and Mendelssohn helped to promote Fanny’s music.
On December 25, 1829, Fanny married painter, Wilhelm Hensel. The couple moved to Berlin, where they had four children together; Carl (born 1830), Marie (born 1832), Paul (born 1834), and Sebastian (born 1835). Despite her busy life as a wife and mother, Fanny continued to compose music throughout her adult years.
Fanny Hensel died on May 14, 1847, at 41. She left behind a significant body of work, including over 400 songs, many of which her husband, Wilhelm, published posthumously.

Early sketches and life as an artist

As a child, Fanny showed great talent as a musician and composer. She began playing the piano early, and her family and friends often played her compositions. At fifteen, she began to study design with Carl Friedrich Zelter in Berlin.
Her family did not always appreciate Fanny’s musical abilities. Her father disapproved of her musical ambitions, preferring that she marry and have children. However, Fanny’s mother encouraged her talent, and she continued to compose music throughout her life.
Despite her father’s disapproval, Fanny managed to have a successful career as a composer and concert pianist. She gave public performances of her music, and her works were well-received by audiences. She also published some of her compositions, which helped to establish her reputation as a composer.
Fanny Hensel was a gifted musician and composer who had a successful career despite opposition from her father. She could pursue her passion for music thanks to the support of her mother and the encouragement of Carl Friedrich Zelter. Her public performances and published works won over audiences and earned her a place in the history of classical music.

“The Magic Flute” in theaters

“The Magic Flute” will be playing in theaters nationwide this summer. The delightful story of a young prince who sets out to rescue a beautiful princess from an evil sorcerer is sure to enchant audiences of all ages. Fanny Hensel’s charming music brings this classic fairy tale to life. And her gorgeous melodies will stay with you long after the curtain falls.

Stage of a final illness

In the final stage of her illness, Fanny Hensel was bedridden and unable to speak. However, she could still hear and see, and family and friends often visited her. Her husband, William, was primarily devoted to her during this time, and he read to her every day. On November 14, 1847, Fanny passed away peacefully in her sleep. She was just forty-six years old.

Death (Dates)

Fanny Hensel was a composer of great talent and promise who tragically died at 41. Her life was cut short just as she was beginning to gain recognition for her music. Although she composed over 400 works, only a handful was published during her lifetime. Many of her unpublished manuscripts were lost or destroyed after her death.
Hensel was born in Hamburg, Germany, on November 14, 1805. She showed musical ability at an early age and began composing pieces for the family’s piano when she was just 11 years old. She received formal music theory and composition training from her father, Friedrich Hensel. Who was a Cantor at St. Catherine’s Church in Hamburg.

Fanny Hensel married

Fanny Hensel married Heinrich Marx, a banker, on August 28, 1829. The couple had five children together before Fanny’s untimely death on May 14, 1847.
During her lifetime, Fanny Hensel maintained a strict policy of not allowing her music to be published under her name. Instead, she used the pseudonym “Mrs. H.” or “A Lady” when submitting her compositions for publication. It wasn’t until after her death that many of her works were finally published. Under her name and recognized as the brilliant compositional achievements they genuinely are.

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