Frans Liszt was the miraculous pianist who became the “ancestral god” of all later piano virtuosi. He was a “giant” in many ways – as a lover he would have provided present-day gossip-columnists with almost inexhaustible material, as a musician he was an innovator who gave ideas to a host of composers for the next two generation – and today there are two opposite and irreconcilable views of his life, work and personality. To some his music has faded, and to others it is among the most exciting products of the nineteenth century. To some he was one of the great “Hungarian” composers, unflagging in his attachment to his nation’s freedom. To others he is primarily a cosmopolitan romantic genius, a leading figure in the movement for a “new music” that included Berlioz in France and Wagner in Germany.
The Hungarian and German aspects of Liszt are reflected in the bare facts of his birth and death. He was born Ferencz Liszt at Raiding in Hungary, in 1811.
Label: Fontana BIG309-L