Austin Chronicle names Michelle Schumann the Best Spirit of Schroeder
Friday September 13, 2013
Of all the Peanuts gang, Schroeder was the most dedicated; his devotion to Beethoven and the piano outshone even Charlie Brown’s unflagging commitment to baseball. We see a lot of that comic-strip prodigy in Michelle Schumann, and not just because she plays a mean toy piano (as she’s shown at her annual Happy Birthday, Mr. Cage concerts). As artistic director for the Austin Chamber Music Center and its yearly summer festival, she’s shown a Schroeder-like enthusiasm for music of all kinds, from Bach to the Bad Plus (including Beethoven, natch), and sought to share its beauty with everyone. Listening to her effuse about Brahms or play a Schubert sonata is to be won over to the classical cause. And Schumann went full Schroeder last December, playing the entire Vince Guaraldi score to A Charlie Brown Christmas (a treat she’ll repeat this year). Her joyful, jazzy performance had our inner Snoopy dancing.