Was Chopin gay? A psychiatrist reports

Was Chopin gay? A psychiatrist reports


norman lebrecht

November 22, 2020

‘Increasing homoerotic manifestations,’ concludes the Brazilian psychiatrist André Iorio from his recitation of the letters below.

The composer’s most recent biographer Alan Walker contents himself with one ‘passing homosexual affair’. It now seems likely there were more.

The latest documentary suggests finds quite a few more.



  • John Borstlap says:

    The piano playing in the video is excruciatingly bad.
    The lines Chopin wrote are very beautiful and should have remained private, because they were intended for private use. Why does posterity want to inspect the underwear of great men? To see whether they were indeed human, all too human? And then, so what? All this sniffing through closed drawers has something unhealthy about it.

    • RW2013 says:

      Borsty, when the time comes, we’ll be on to you too, so I hope that Sally has started cleaning out YOUR drawers!

      • John Borstlap says:

        That’s becoming a problem. I caught her already nosing through my sketches, and one of the cupboard here.

      • Paul Carlile says:

        “Drawers”……wasn’t that the name given by our grandmothers to knickers? In that case, Sally will have a doubly unenviable task…..draw your own conclusions!

    • James Weiss says:

      I’m trying to figure out why I should care. Unless it has to some direct bearing on his music I couldn’t care less who he liked to blow.

    • Occamsrazor says:

      John, what’s amusing is that nobody has asked the obvious, would Chopin march in gay parades if he were alive today. Horowitz didn’t . He was one the most elevated souls among all pianists and had enough brains to know that such parades are as ridiculous as manic depressive pride parades even though he was both gay and severely bipolar. Both are inborn conditions that are neither crimes nor vices. I don’t consider hard drug use to be either crime nor a vice when done by an adult even though it’s a choice and meets the scientific definition of a lifestyle unlike homosexuality which is neither. But watching a heroin junkie pride parade would bother me or especially getting to the point where junkies would show up in high schools and teach first graders the correct use of spoons, lighters, cotton and tourniquets. They soon will be able to do it basing their right on the fact that a percentage of kids will later shoot dope anyway and they need to do it safely. The society cannot allow future addicts to start their dope adventure unprepared and their first, timid shots to be clumsy, cloudy or not sufficiently cooked. Yet this same logic is used to justify the current sex education.

      • Occamsrazor says:

        Russians occupy a unique place in political discourse. The things that one is not only allowed but encouraged to say about us, if said about any other ethnicity, would be a political suicide and a guaranteed crucification at the cross of the political correctness. We are officially subhuman, still the untermenschen from Mein Kampf to this day. The liberal establishment which prides itself on bending over backwards to please every group of people is releasing its suppressed nazi instincts onto us who take it as the greatest of compliments. We must be doing something right if we inspire such hatred from these people. Also, the centuries old dream of weakening and conquering Russia will never die. Instead, we are being almost begged by the West to commit the final suicide. Believe me, if Icelandic people had the same territory and over the half of the planet ‘s resources like we do, entire universities and think tanks would be working for centuries on the various strategies of undermining all things Icelandic. Talk to anyone who has visited Russia and better yet, spent some time there. With all our flaws, the majority of visitors realize within days and even hours that they have been lied to by the media for their entire lives.Recently the proud Polish people have been added to the list of those almost as bad as Russians by the liberal establishment . The Russian-Polish relationship is irreparably damaged by our bloody history and mutual grievances. Poles either hate us or love us and vs versa. Those of us that love and respect each other often overdo these feelings to compensate for the hateful factions. I’ve recently discovered an instant way of turning an occasional Pole who gives off uneasy vibes upon meeting a group of Russians, into an instant friend. I honestly tell such Polish people how much I respect them for their deep Catholic faith and family values and also add that imho because we agree about the most important things in life, we’ll always be our Slavic brothers. An instant friendship is created amid curses in 3 languages at the same time. Currently, they seem to be even more ardent conservatives than us because they are more ardent about things in general. They have honestly earned an honorable place on the liberal hate list. A NATO country with God-fearing population is a healthy exception similar to Turkey. If liberals push them far enough, they will kick the NATO bases out and form an alliance with Russia. The liberal greed and their lack of even basic understanding of how the normal, healthy human creature operates, may open doors to unexpected geopolitical changes. Liberals cannot understand that if shoving abortions and gay parades into the conservative nations’ throats is important to liberals , it would make sense to also consider how important it is for the conservative nations not to have those things. The presence of NATO bases on the Polish territory creates a bit of a surreal effect in the light of the fact that our languages are close enough to be understood by each other and our being the objects of the same eternal, unadulterated racial hatred the West Europe has for the East Europe. Wasn’t the Warsaw Pact a thing of beauty, with Russians being the first among equals, conflicts like the 31 year Armenian-Azeri senseless war among the members unimaginable and nobody ever daring to utter the word “overpopulation”. Every Warsaw Pact country had experienced rapid population growth. People have forgotten that implementing any policies aimed at reducing a particular population is the definition of genocide. The Western European nations have already committed suicide and seeing Poland give birth to a Polish baby causes the Western corpse to twitch in its dying envy for any expression of life. Instead they would love to build on every Polish corner abortion clinics, methadone and subutex dispensaries , Muslim refugee camps and have gay parades daily between these destinations for the added glamour and flamboyance. By the way, Liszt was politically a fossilized dinosaur in spite of his womanizing, which if you give it another look is a trait far from liberal, it originated in the ancient reptilian part of the brain, way before 1960s. Viktor Orban is also busy putting his nation on the list of subhumans who are reluctant to join the collective European suicide. I honestly think that Liszt may have had some gay tendencies and so may have Wagner. Both were rabid antisemites who are sometimes a little fruity. Why not forge a love letter from Liszt to Wagner, the literary style being very easy to imitate due to the mountains of Liszt writing available and have some semi-literate psychiatrist to recite it to the accompaniment of Mephisto Waltz played on a 25$ Casio keyboard? Beethoven has been followed by vague theories of his relationship with his nephew not being entirely platonic.. his letters also worth forging… imagine how many opportunities could be created for the conservatory sheeple to genuflect before the militant faction of the otherwise harmless carriers of gay tendencies? Chopin would be horrified to learn that he is now classified by his sexuality like some non-entity whose only claim to fame is their unorthodox libido and that his name is used for a feast of virtue signaling and smearing his beloved country as some backward shithole , for the glory of which he had burned himself in 39 years of his short life. His raison d’etre was hatred for the Russian empire and all things Russian. Perhaps it was such because he hadn’t met an American or a Western European liberal, the 2020 version.

  • Bloom says:

    This sounds as if homoeroticism were some kind of mental disease. I am waiting for some very dirty rumours that Tchaikovsky had clear hetero tendencies during his manic-depressive episodes.

    • John Borstlap says:

      That seems indeed to have been the case. According to a secret police report from August 1872, there was a very unusual and depressed encounter in Lucerne between Tchaikovsky and a young waitress, leading to a stolen kiss in the Bruchstrasse.

    • Occamsrazor says:

      Bloom, homosexuality is a common mental illness which was removed from the list other of mental conditions due to political reasons both obvious and hidden. To deny this scientific fact requires performing mental gymnastics of denying the objective reality and effectively proclaiming that 2+2=5. This induced schizophrenia is the real goal of forcing people to go along with this agenda and the gay community has been used as a pawn by tptb. Tptb don’t give a damn about helping to lessen the discrimination against gay people. Making people uphold that 2+2=5 regardless of reasons however noble is the intended removing the underpinning of sanity from our civilization. Everyone recognizes this fact including many honest gay people. This precedent has led us all the way to our present masked selves. By now denying that 2+2=4 daily is the ticket to being employed and in many places being outside of prison.

      • Paul Brownsey says:

        No, it is not a “scientific fact” that homosexuality is a mental illness. That claim is just your nasty little prejudice dressing itself up in would-be respectability. You must be ignorant of what scientific facts are and hiow they are established.

        • Occamsrazor says:

          Paul, would you kindly enlighten me about what scientific facts are. While I’m waiting for your answer I’d to clarify my idea so you don’t waste your time on something that could be an innocent misunderstanding. High rate of occurrence of something is not a justification of inclusion of it into the scientific realm of normal. I know that the idea of things being either normal or not has been eradicated in people like you by other people like you. But I assure you that normality exists everywhere as both scientific and legal term. Every human being has an occasional cold and pimples but nobody would deny that these universal conditions are mild illnesses and deviations from perfect health. Even more, if every single person on the planet got a severe cold at the same time, our civilization would be in danger. The same logic applies to gayness, even though it’s common it is a major deviation from the norm which can only be heterosexuality because if everyone becomes gay we would be extinct and if everyone becomes straight…well… nobody straight misses the Democratic Party anyway. There are all kinds of misdirected libido, some people like to make love to animals. Are they normal too? Only in a society where the norm doesn’t exist. Let me ask you something, since your ideology is based on eradicating normalcy, what makes you think that these mental gymnastics will be required only when one is considering the subject of homosexuality? How about we try to eradicate every other definition of normalcy not related to sexual matters? After all you cannot discriminate against the sufferers of other norms? You may want to stop being so picky in grocery stores, choosing the best looking veggies and fruits and discriminating against the imperfect ones. The poor imperfect fruits are crying fascism and demanding justice. As for the gay desire itself, it’s so unfathomable and repulsive to the majority which is straight that we choose not to ever think about it. We are the majority and we set norms by the same logic that allows even inanimate objects such as cars the divine right to define the normal shape of wheels as round rather than square because the majority of them have been observed while riding on round ones rather than square. I’ve also heard that it’s the basis of democracy where the majority sets norms. I know that homosexual dictatorship is almost complete by now but you will soon see it disappear as nothing more than one of many unfortunate events overlooked for little while by the sleepy majority that is now waking up and crawling to the kitchen to make their first cup of coffee of the day.

          • John Borstlap says:

            Hear hear.

            Has anybody ever considered the curious fact that evolution has not eradicated m/m love, while it is clear that gays don’t procreate? So, from an evolutionary point of view, which deals exclusively with how nature works, there must be an advantage to the existence of a percentage of the species refraining from the natural drives of the rest. The same phenomenon can be observed in any animal species.

            There is no human culture in any period or place which had no corner of m/m relationships, where often the most important contributions to society were born. Enough said.

            What is more concerning is the vulgarity of demonstrations in parades, group formation, etc. – which are twisted reactions to the twisted views of an ignorant majority of which the comment above is a prime example.

            By the way, there are enough m/f couples around which invoke disgust in others, so that could never be a reliable measurement.

          • Paul Brownsey says:

            “Has anybody ever considered the curious fact that evolution has not eradicated m/m love, while it is clear that gays don’t procreate? ”

            Yes, people have. An example is the kin-selection hypothesis.

          • Paul Brownsey says:

            Oh, and what about f/f love, or isn’t that as real?

          • John Borstlap says:

            That doesn’t exist at all. It is an invention of men with overheated fantasy.


          • Paul Brownsey says:

            So is heterosexual sex.

          • Paul Brownsey says:

            “Paul, would you kindly enlighten me about what scientific facts are. ”

            You clearly have no idea, or you wouldn’t say that it is a scientific fact that to be gay is to have a mental disorder. You need to think a little about what a disorder is and what are the criteria for labelling something as a disorder. Don’t forget to factor in the social attitudes that often play a significant part: that, for instance, women who didn’t find being a wife the be-all and ends-all of living were once regarded as mentally ill.

            “But I assure you that normality exists everywhere as both scientific and legal term.”

            People like you fail to distinguish between mere *statistical* norm and the use of “norm(al)” to express the idea that there is something WRONG WITH someone who is outwith the statistical norm.

            “You may want to stop being so picky in grocery stores, choosing the best looking veggies and fruits and discriminating against the imperfect ones.” How extraordinarily silly you are. Are you sure this wild and irrelevant ranting is not itself a sign of mental disorder in you?

            “As for the gay desire itself, it’s so unfathomable and repulsive to the majority which is straight that we choose not to ever think about it.”

            Yes, you choose never to think about it; which is how you come to be on here ranting about it.

            “I’ve also heard that it’s the basis of democracy where the majority sets norms. ”

            There is no defensible definition of democracy according to which majority opinion is to prevail on everything. Do grow up.

            “I know that homosexual dictatorship is almost complete by now”

            What an ineffably stupid thing to say. It really is. It’s the sort of thing uttered by bonkers ranters half cut in the Dog and Bigot.

            And you still have no idea what a scientific fact is.

          • Quincy Liu says:

            “There is no defensible definition of democracy according to which majority opinion is to prevail on everything.”
            My thought in supporting this is: if a numerical majority claims the mandate to do whatever it likes, including outlawing whatever it does not like, then it is not democracy but a dictatorship of a numerical majority of 50% of the votes plus 1.

      • HugoPreuss says:

        Congratulations, this gets the gold medal for the most uninformed, prejudiced, backward comment I’ve ever seen on these pages (and that is saying something). Even the Pope is more enlightened than this rubbish from the 1950s. Any other arrows in your quiver? Women should be confined to the kitchen? Segregation of the races is God’s will?? Bring it on!

        • Occamsrazor says:

          Hugo, your entire post consists of nothing but 100% empty ad hominem. You should offer something more substantial for me to answer. I tend to avoid descending to this level because it may end by me commenting on the million posts here containing only one word: “ troll “. The poor guy’s brain is stuck and it can be helped by small doses of lithium carbonate… Empty ad hominem unfortunately has no pharmacological solution.

          • John Borstlap says:

            Occam’s razor is a dangerous instrument in clumsy hands.


          • HugoPreuss says:

            LOL, you may call it ad hominem, but I am not debating an antediluvian troll. There is a gazillion of evidence out there. The debate is over, and your side lost. Your views on homosexuality may still have some currency in Iran or Saudi-Arabia and among rabid evangelicals, but nowhere else. There is, literally, nothing to debate.

          • Occamsrazor says:

            Hugo, here you’ve used the same empty ad hominem, added references to some undefined common knowledge and added the indignant “nothing to debate “ tactic which is the last resort of those who are completely defeated but don’t have the guts to admit it. During press conferences by major establishment figures discussing things like 911 you could observe an occasional brave yet naive soul asking hard questions and immediately dragged out of there by security thugs. Sometimes the establishment whore would give the naive soul a chance to avoid being dragged out by saying saying something like:” I’m not gonna dignify this with an answer “ etc. I’m far from naive and you don’t have a button that makes security thugs spring into action. As for Chopin, some of his music couldn’t have been written by a straight person In general, he never composed a single ugly note and in that sense is without equals except Mozart. He was homosexual only in terms orientation because opium addicts are incapable of any sexual activity and live in a constipated, timeless, weightless and sexless world. What is more interesting is his rabid hatred for Russians which can only delight the liberal establishment. Your joy is premature and makes sense to read my posts in their entirety. He hated Jews even more. In one of his letters he says that his only dream is to be able to strangle a Jew with his bare hands. What is delightful is that the best interpreters of his music have been Russian Jews and that he carried a Russian passport for his entire life so I like reminding people that he was a Russian composer. Isn’t Rachmaninov called an American composer by many sources?

          • Paul Brownsey says:

            And yours was 100% mind-empty ranting, so hopelessly illogical and muddled that it would require hours to sort out the confusions, ignorance and sheer bad reasoning in it. You’re hopelssly out of your depth.

      • William Safford says:


        • Quincy Liu says:

          You’ve noticed! His name suddenly appeared on the scene, and with it the rant of the non-existence of the cornavirus.

      • Occamsrazor says:

        By the way I can easily cast doubt about the widely held belief that Chopin and Tchaikovsky were gay. This theory is based upon gay innuendos supposedly found in their letters. I don’t know the French situation of the time regarding the attitudes towards gayness but in Russia at the time being gay earned the poor sufferers of this condition a couple of years of hard labor in very cold climates. Also, every letter, especially being sent to and from major figures such as Tchaikovsky who was a huge star adored by the Tsar, was opened and scrutinized by secret police. To think that Tchaikovsky was either dumb or crazy enough to give any hint of gay tendencies in his letters is not believable. You may ask about the letters themselves in his handwriting. I’m somewhat of an antiques collector and it’s common knowledge that letters and manuscripts are among the items most commonly counterfeited being second only to high-end violins in terms of the frequency of encountering a fake. Paper, ink and handwriting are the easiest things to forge considering the fact that a large portion of priceless paintings in all major museums are forgeries that require real talent and lots of hard work to create. Also, I doubt anyone has ever seen the gay letters of Chopin and Tchaikovsky, let alone was allowed to even briefly examine them. All we get is short quotes from them published by some magazine or a website. To accept this as fact isn’t that ridiculous these days considering the fact that 2+2 has been 5 for quite some time already. It’s enough to look out the window at all these masked people who agree that bars and restaurants need to be closed at 10pm because the virus comes there and starts working only after 10pm and who agree that churches must be closed and casinos can be open because the virus loves religion and hates gambling. So it seems that there is no need to age paper, make ink the old way from tannins and iron powder, forge the handwriting and create gay confessions in the literary style of the historical figure who is dead and cannot defend himself, which is the only part of a forgery that requires a little imagination. Why Tchaikovsky could be in need of being posthumously included in the already long list of famous gay people is explained by his genuine conservatism and Russian patriotism which the liberal establishment of the time hated exactly the same as CNN does today. The liberal establishment never forgave his being a very outspoken conservative supporter of the Tsar. What they did was spreading rumors about his homosexuality which most likely had no basis in reality and painted one of the greatest figures of Russian culture as a neurotic homosexual driven to suicide by arsenic poisoning due to self-hatred. I also doubt the poison story and I think that the cholera outbreak was the cause of his death. I have a few very close gay friends whom I accept as they are. I consider them somewhat crazy and don’t hide my conservative attitude from them and they also accept my opinions because neither of us can ever be changed even if we wanted to. I wonder if there will be an official expert examination of Chopin letters verifying their authenticity by someone under oath in court. Before that I refuse to spend another minute on pondering whether he he was gay. To be completely honest, I don’t need an expertise of neither Chopin or Tchaikovsky letters, some of their music is so gay that it’s obvious to any musician. What makes me angry is people thinking that everyone in the classical world is so dumb that they not only can publish quotes from the letters that nobody has ever seen and have the nerve to offer them as proof , they think that nobody has a basic understanding of the historical context of the time to be able to point out that writing gay letters at that time was as smart as drug dealers in the midst of a sting operation chatting on the phone about their drugs to be sold and using their correct chemical terms.

        • Eric says:

          This is one of the most ignorant and unintentionally funny comments I have ever read on this site. There are moments of truth though, such as Russian patriotism = homophobia (as well as antisemitism). I’m sure your gay friends as so grateful for your acceptance.

          • John Borstlap says:

            I actualy thought it was satire.

          • Occamsrazor says:

            John, you only now have discovered that everything I say is satire? Classical musicians provide comedy material that deserves figures way more talented than me like Woody Allen to explore, especially now when the food supply reaching these creatures is being choked tighter every day. The real comedy has started in mid March of 2020 and we can enjoy watching the grand finale we are improvising in real time. Woody Allen is undoubtedly aware of the unparalleled comic potential that can be found every day in every conservatory but unfortunately it has zero potential for financial success because nobody gives a damn about classical music except the patients themselves. I suspect he may have made a movie about it already that is funny enough to burst aneurysms like “Bullets over Broadway “ for his private enjoyment. I consider Bullets over Broadway the greatest cinematic achievement of all time. Remember that line: “ An artist creates his own moral universe.”?

          • Occamsrazor says:

            Eric, each of my gay friends has a lifelong crush on me.

          • John Borstlap says:

            At least one person is happy here.

      • Glissando1234567890 says:

        You really are a nasty piece of work. Can’t you just go away and prove the flatness of the Earth with your little friends? Or is it witch dunking day?

  • Greg Bottini says:

    Are YOU gay, Norman?

  • Elizabeth Owen says:

    Who cares! His music was sublime, end of!

  • mary says:

    Psychiatrist? It’s the 21st century, psychiatry has no more to say about homosexuality than about heterosexuality, neither is a psychiatric condition. It’s like asking a podiatrist for his opinion on straight people.

    And what’s up with John Borstlap’s above post about sniffing great men’s underwear?

    • John Borstlap says:

      Well, imagine all your stuff is going to be laid under the magnifying glass after you have gone. What about posthumous privacy? How do we know that the dead no longer exist somewhere? It’s worse than hell, you can’t protest.

      The 19th century saw a surge of hero worship of great artists, denying them humanity. And now, it’s the opposite, stripping them in public to show they’re human after all.

      • Paul Brownsey says:

        “The 19th century saw a surge of hero worship of great artists, denying them humanity. And now, it’s the opposite, stripping them in public to show they’re human after all.”

        You’ve nothing to fear on that score, then.

    • Anthony Sayer says:

      @Mary – You have to understand John’s sense of humour and enjoy his mastery of English which, considering it is not his first language, is extremely impressive.

      • Occamsrazor says:

        Anthony, your trying to reveal my identity wrapped in flattery is amusing as are most actions of classical musicians. I can’t count instances when I’ve faced things a bit more threatening to my immediate physical survival than anything attempted by any musician. There is Russian expression that sounds in English roughly like “trying to scare a porcupine by showing it one’s naked ass.” My English is a little better than that of most other Russian immigrants who came to USA at the same age and have spent the same time here because my Russian is infinitely better than theirs. Also, it should be considered that Russians in general cannot master a foreign language, hence the shameful spectacles of Russian heads of state speaking through interpreters. Putin spoke near perfect German and I’ve used the past tense intentionally because the current version can’t.

        • John Borstlap says:

          Some confusion of identity here. That is often the result of looking too deeply in the complex mysteries of gender.

  • Fliszt says:

    One suspects that Andre Iorio’s Polish translations and psychological insights are as amateur as the piano playing in this film. If that is the case, then his conclusions drawn here are irresponsible. At any rate Chopin was human, and therefore sexual – nothing more need be said.

  • Alviano says:

    Two points:
    — If a human being creates great art, anything we can learn about the artist, his personality, his background, and the society in which he worked helps us to understand and appreciate his art (NB: I am using the masculine, singular pronoun as a stand-in for all genders as I was taught many decades ago).
    — Those who “don’t care” that Chopin may have had sex with men are simply avoiding the subject as a consequence of their own homophobia.

    • John Borstlap says:

      The masculine singular pronoun has indeed two functions: 1) to indicate a male person; 2) to indicate a human being in a neutral sense. The 2nd meaning is comparable with the description of the human being, in philosophical context, as ‘man’: ‘The main problem of man is the dichotomy between his mental and animalistic faculties’.

      Since the female form never had this twofold meaning, the suggestion is that there exist men in entirely abstract terms. This stems from the deeply-ingrained idea in Western civilization that abstract thinking is a male occupation, and not a female one. Another linguistic suggestion is, ironically, that there exist men whose gender cannot be defined with any certainty. Feminism struggles with this linguistic heritage because of the sub rosa implications: internalized patriarchal authoritarianism. It has even been suggested that the words ‘he’ and ‘she’ be replaced by ‘it’. The rewriting of all books in existence will be quite a job.

    • Greg Bottini says:

      Point one: well taken.
      Point two: I myself don’t care that Chopin may have had sex with men, and I am FAR from homophobic. Your second point is total rubbish.

      • Hilary says:

        How to adequately convey this?
        Growing up as gay was facilitated because I was aware of gay people. Some were people I knew, but the majority were historical figures like Tchaikovsky, Bernstein and so on. Just for a moment imagine that all which existed was the celluloid presentation of homosexuality and the illegality of it.
        It wouldn’t have filled me with much sense of self-worth.

        • Greg Bottini says:

          I am completely sympathetic to your position, Hilary.
          What I was trying to say, and apparently did not state clearly enough, is that as a heterosexual, I can be totally accepting of the gay community – and individual gay people – at the same time as not being overly interested in the gay (or non-gay) sexual lives of historical – or current – figures.
          That is my own view and opinion, and I certainly do not intend it to be any kind of manifesto.
          (Also, please note that I was in agreement with Alviano’s first point, although again, I didn’t state that clearly enough.)
          – good luck and best regards, Greg

          • V.Lind says:

            You have just neatly encapsulated my entire position on this topic. Thanks for the succinct comprehensiveness.

  • Jean says:

    I remember Lang Lang’s deeply analytical liner notes on the Chopin Piano Concertos DG recording: ”In the 1st concerto he is still dreaming of a girl, but in the 2nd concerto he has already found the girl.”

    QED. Lang Lang knows what he is talking about.

    • Fliszt says:

      Silly comment. Chopin’s 2 Concerti were written fairly simultaneously. Lang Lang, please go back to school. I’m still recovering from your 2005 performance of Chopin’s first Concerto with NYPO/Maazel, which was dreadful.

  • Quis Paget Entrat says:

    The late Irish raconteur Dave Allen makes a valid point.

    Well, like Dave Allen, I’m leaving before they make it compulsory!


    • Dander says:

      Yes making it compulsory would be a mistake, to be sure. No rear entry thank you verymuch.

      • Paul Brownsey says:

        Oh, God, the cavalry’s here. In almost any online discussion that touches on homosexuality there arrives a squad of supposedly heterosexual blokes who want to giggle about anal sex, egging each other on about backs to the wall and giving and receiving and stuff like that. One is reminded of what is sometimes referred to as a circle jerk.

    • Paul Brownsey says:

      No, my love, it isn’t a valid point. And the people like you who keep on making it show (a) a sad lack of originality, and (b) a sad state of mind that feels driven to say it.

  • Quis Paget Entrat says:

    Remember folks he died of TB before he had time to get VD!

    The 19th Century was an exceedingly dodgy place and time with no modern medicine, no anaesthesia, no IV, antibiotics.

    You had either to be born under a lucky star or be Irish to live beyond 70.

  • fflambeau says:

    Many, many creative people are/were gay. It’s something that straight people have trouble dealing with. This is not surprising at all. The reason that gays had to “hide” is also obvious: married, straights don’t and have not tolerated them. The hate persists as these message boards show.

  • fflambeau says:

    “The composer’s most recent biographer Alan Walker contents himself with one ‘passing homosexual affair’. It now seems likely there were more.

    The latest documentary suggests finds quite a few more.”

    Any biographer worthy of that title knows that lots of things have been lost or intentionally destroyed. Just think of all the contacts Chopin probably had that we know nothing of (and likely will never either).

    • John Borstlap says:

      Indeed. What do we know about the many affairs Chopin had, under George’s nose, with her staff members, including the gardiner and some of the neighbours, and all those grocery delivery staff in Mallorca where George had taken him in a desperate effort to get him stop his indulgences? Nothing, absolutely nothing.

  • Tony says:

    Of course we should learn as much as we can about historically significant figures. But if Fryderyk was in fact homosexual it doesn’t take away anything from his stature as a pioneer of Romanticism in western music and significance as a composer who extended the scope of the piano, pianism, and piano composition beyond what was previously possible. Further, his supposed homosexuality does not effect his compositional syntax or harmonic/formal vocabulary, as some new-musicology proponents would have us believe with Schubert. Fryderyk didn’t claim to be a devout Catholic like his compatriot, Karol Wojtyła, whose halo may need removing due to his “humanity” (aka crimes of concealment)!

    • Paganono says:

      Correct – it doesn’t take away anything, nor does it contribute anything. So leave it alone and let him Rest In Peace.

    • Alviano says:

      My reading of the above is that to say his homosexuality “doesn’t take away anything from…” suggests that under some circumstances it might or that some might think so or that some might find it a negative attribute. Kind of like, “Wagner was a vicious anti-semite but it doesn’t take away anything from his music.” That was my point.

      • John Borstlap says:

        I was patiently wating till this moment when Wagner would be dragged into the discussion. He was an antisemite, cross-dresser, womanizer, failed lecturer & philosopher, revolutionary, reactionary, failed interior designer, money waster, fanatic collector of Parisian perfumes, and also a composer of great works. How come?

      • Occamsrazor says:

        Alviano, people on this site understandably associate gayness with harmless, most often effeminate fragile artistic types who must be protected from vicious, heartless reactionary troglodytes like an average American red neck or an average stereotypical Russian like myself. I’d like to show my colleagues another kind of homosexual, a guy who bench presses 600lbs and doing 357 years +2 life sentences to be served concurrently for a double murder of an old convenience store lady cashier and a cop. Not all homosexuals are capable of a penetrative interpretation of a posthumous Chopin mazurka.

  • Jonathan Sutherland says:

    It seems Chopin’s sexuality has long been a sore point with prudish Poles.
    According to Harvey Sachs’ excellent biography, Artur Rubinstein became apoplectic if anyone suggested that Chopin may have been homosexual or even bisexual. Rubinstein’s wife Nela claimed the feisty Fritz Reiner incurred her husband’s eternal wrath by casting such aspersions but the permanent rift had more to do with Reiner publicly rebuking the great pianist for playing too many wrong notes during a recording of the Tchaikovsky concerto.

  • Occamsrazor says:

    Jonathan, English is my second language and I may never acquire the full depth of understanding of many words but I always thought that prudish meant someone shy and reluctant to discuss sexual matters. To me only the heterosexual aspects can be classified as sexual matters and I view homosexuality as an exclusively psychological phenomenon. I’m way more interested in Chopin’s lifelong laudanum habit than his sexuality because the fact that one of the greatest musicians in history was a junkie is infinitely more worthy of researching than his alleged being gay which is a very common thing that hardly ever stimulates creativity in the same profound way that various tasty substances can. When I say “alleged “ I intend to wait until we have hard evidence of him being that way like a videotape of him engaged in amorous activity with some Parisian hair stylist, holding a Polish newspaper with the correct date and preferably a bottle of laudanum next to the bed. PS. I’m certain that he was gay, it’s enough to listen to his opus 10 No.9 Etude to stop waiting for that videotape. My favorite Chopin music is the Finale of the B flat minor sonata, it’s one of the very greatest musical achievements ever and certainly the best among the pieces of the same size. If we use a sports analogy and compare the musical length to the weight classes of weightlifters and the depth of musical thought to the weight lifted, pound for pound this piece has to be the greatest musical achievement of them all.

    • John Borstlap says:

      This makes me think of my aunt Sara who once used her occam’s razer to cut the vegetables, but she wounded herself dangerously and had to be rescued from the kitchen.


    • V.Lind says:

      The only psychological phenomenon I am seeing here is your refusal to accept facts. Conservative, are you?

      And I don’t care what your first language is — what I have seen of your English is more than adequate to communicate. But could you extend your diligent studies to learning how to make paragraphs? I have skipped a lot of your recent screeds and simply inferred their content by the replies because I cannot wade through that ocean of text.

      I don’t mind reading long posts — thoroughly enjoy them when they are making reasonable points in a reasonable way. (And I do not mean agreeing with me — I read opposing views with interest — when can slug through them without eye-ache.

      Let us know if you need to be told how to do it technically or what the principles of paragraphing are.

      • Occamsrazor says:

        Lind, I know what you mean but I cannot do paragraphing because I’m fast typing on an iPhone 6 hence my occasional mistakes. All I can do is try to make my posts as short as possible.

  • LydiaWahlberg says:

    Who cares? This is so trivial.

  • Alexander T says:

    This is all so passé……

  • fflambeau says:

    What is striking to me is the high level of hostility towards being gay manifested in these comments. Is it a wonder, then, that Chopin, who grew up in one of the most homophobic countries in the world, left (for Paris, no less) and never returned? The hate continues.

    • Occamsrazor says:

      Would you care to show me an example of hate here? Remember how ecstatic homosexuals were when homosexuality was removed from penal codes and was classified correctly as mental illness? I think it makes sense to relearn to feel that joy in our present joyless world. I constantly search the past for forgotten old-fashioned sources of joy. It’s a useful mental exercise.

    • John Borstlap says:

      People who hate m/m relationships are simply people mis- or uninformed. Or people who don’t know how to handle their cutlery.

  • St. Sebatian says:

    I know a guy who knows a guy who knows a guy that was blown by Chopin. He identified as female at the moment though so totally hetero IMHO.

  • Cefran says:

    So who gives a damn?

  • David Henson says:

    This seems very clear to me. But does it matter. For me, his music matters most.

    I don’t mean to deny it. I believe it is important to be open and honest, too.

    Personally I always regarded him as asexual in nature, like Andy Warhol. For me, his is idealism, and spiritual.

  • John Cowie says:

    All I have to say is it is a sin the Bible tells us to.practice homosexuality. I was gay and havr repented and have no same sex attraction. I preach the Gospel. Praise The Lord. God is all the time. All the time God is good!