Kinderszenen, (excerpt: Fast zu ernst (Almost Too Serious))
Schumann wrote 30 movements for this work, but chose 13 for the final version. The unused movements were later published in Bunte Blätter, Opus 99, and Albumblätter, Opus 124. Discussing the set, Schumann told his wife Clara that the "thirty small, droll things" were inspired by her comment that he sometimes seemed "like a child". In 1840, he described them as "more cheerful, gentler, more melodic" than his earlier works.
Originally called Leichte Stücke ("Easy Pieces"), the section titles were only added after the completion of the composition, and Schumann described them as "nothing more than delicate hints for execution and interpretation".