Berlioz is the quintessential Romantic: he wrote the subject of today’s post, the very fun Symphonie Fantastique, to deal with his lovesickness—and he ended up getting the girl because of it!
Another Berlioz heartbreak anecdote: after his fiancée left him for another man (note, this woman is not the same as the subject of the Symphonie Fantastique), Berlioz plotted her and her new husband’s murder. He traveled to Nice, where the couple was living, and took along weapons, disguises, and other murder paraphernalia. When he disembarked from the train, he came to his senses, and abandoned his ill-conceived plot. Instead, he spent a couple of weeks in Nice composing.
Talk about a whiplash! I’m a sensitive poet-warrior at times, and I’ve experienced lovesickness, but never to the extent of Berlioz. Still, I identify with his desire to compose music to get (or to cope with not getting) chicks.
With that, here is 29 January 2021’s “The Joy of Romantic Music III: Hector Berlioz’s ‘Symphonie Fantastique’“: