Franz Liszt
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1811-10-22
https://musicbrainz.org/artist/2cd475bb-1abd-40c4-9904-6d4b691c752c
Franz Liszt

Franz Liszt Biography (BBC)

Franciscus Liszt – named after the monastic order which his father Adam had once joined – was born in Raiding in eastern Austria, where Adam Liszt was a manager on the Eszterházy estates, and had been a cellist in the palace orchestra when Haydn was Kapellmeister. Adam took his amazingly gifted young son first to Vienna to study with Czerny (piano) and Salieri (composition), then to Paris. Aged 15 when Adam died, Liszt was already famous as a pianist of mesmerising virtuosity and musicianship.

The 1830 Paris revolution established Liszt’s republican political sympathies. Further radical influences were the music of Berlioz, Paganini’s violin playing, and friendship with the maverick Catholic Abbé Lamennais. A relationship with the older (and married) Countess Marie d’Agoult necessitated the couple’s elopement to Switzerland and Italy, where their three children were born (their daughter Cosima was to become Wagner’s second wife). When the River Danube disastrously flooded in 1838, Liszt’s fundraising concerts awoke a proud awareness of his Hungarian roots. The next years of concert touring thrilled audiences from Ireland to the Ukraine, with Liszt performing a formidable repertoire, ranging from Handel to Chopin besides his own music.

From 1847 Liszt rarely played in public. Settling in Weimar with the Ukrainian (and married) Princess Carolyne Sayn- Wittgenstein, he composed, taught piano pupils and conducted and enlarged the Weimar orchestra: major events were the premiere of Wagner’s Lohengrin (1850) and two Berlioz festivals. Revisions of piano music from the Swiss and Italian years produced supreme Romantic masterworks in the first two books of Années de pèlerinage (1838–61) and Études d’exécution transcendante (1838–51), and a remarkable fusion of sacred inspiration and secular forms in Harmonies poétiques et religieuses (1833–53). Besides the Sonata in B minor (1852–3), Liszt also completed two piano concertos (1849–56 and 1859); his Dante Symphony (1856–7) and Faust Symphony (1856–7); a Missa solemnis for the new cathedral of Esztergom (Gran) in 1855–8; and an uneven, but powerfully influential set of 12 symphonic poems (1841–58).

In 1861 Liszt followed Princess Carolyne to Rome, where Vatican-related intrigues concerning the annulment of her Catholic marriage destroyed her and Liszt’s own marriage plans. Staying on in the city, Liszt took minor Catholic orders and completed two large-scale oratorios, St Elisabeth (1857–62) and Christus (1866– 72). From 1869 Abbé Liszt divided his life between Rome, Weimar and Budapest, completing a third book of Années de pèlerinage in 1877, and exploring an astonishing, pre-modernist sound-world in his last piano and choral works.

Profile © Malcolm Hayes


Franz Liszt Performances & Interviews


Franz Liszt Tracks

Franz Liszt
Spinning Chorus from The Flying Dutchman
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Spinning Chorus from The Flying Dutchman

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Franz Liszt
2 Episodes From Lenau's Faust S.110 for orchestra
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2 Episodes From Lenau's Faust S.110 for orchestra
Franz Liszt
Sonetto 123 del Petrarca from Années de Pèlerinage - Année 2: Italie S. 161
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Sonetto 123 del Petrarca from Années de Pèlerinage - Année 2: Italie S. 161
Franz Liszt
Tarantella from Venezia e Napoli (S.162)
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Tarantella from Venezia e Napoli (S.162)
Franz Liszt
Harmonies poetiques et religieuses (10), S.173 No.3
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Harmonies poetiques et religieuses (10), S.173 No.3
Franz Schubert
Ellens Gesang 3 'Ave Maria', D.839
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Ellens Gesang 3 'Ave Maria', D.839
Franz Liszt
Les jeux d'eaux à la Villa d'Este (3me Années de pèlerinage)
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Les jeux d'eaux à la Villa d'Este (3me Années de pèlerinage)
Franz Liszt
Piano Concerto no. 1 in E flat major, S.124
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Piano Concerto no. 1 in E flat major, S.124
Franz Liszt
Gretchen - A Faust Symphony (2nd movement)
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Gretchen - A Faust Symphony (2nd movement)
Richard Wagner
Spinning Chorus (The Flying Dutchman)
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Spinning Chorus (The Flying Dutchman)
Franz Liszt
Au lac de Wallenstadt (Années de pèlerinage I)
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Au lac de Wallenstadt (Années de pèlerinage I)
Franz Liszt
Les préludes
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Les préludes
Franz Liszt
La Campanella (6 Grandes etudes de Paganini)
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La Campanella (6 Grandes etudes de Paganini)
Franz Liszt
Liebesträume - 3 Notturnos S.541 (no.3)
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Liebesträume - 3 Notturnos S.541 (no.3)
Franz Liszt
Concert Study no.3 in D flat major 'Un sospiro'
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Concert Study no.3 in D flat major 'Un sospiro'
Franz Liszt
St Francis of Assisi's sermon to the birds (2 Legends)
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St Francis of Assisi's sermon to the birds (2 Legends)
Franz Liszt
Consolation No 3 in D flat major
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Consolation No 3 in D flat major
Franz Liszt
Piano Concerto no 2 in A major
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Piano Concerto no 2 in A major
Franz Liszt
Transcendental Study No 12 in B flat minor, 'Chasse-neige'
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Transcendental Study No 12 in B flat minor, 'Chasse-neige'
Charles‐François Gounod
Waltz (Faust)
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Waltz (Faust)
Franz Liszt
Transcendental Study No 6 in G minor, 'Vision'
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Transcendental Study No 6 in G minor, 'Vision'
Franz Liszt
Piano Concerto No 1 in E flat major
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Piano Concerto No 1 in E flat major
Franz Liszt
Fantasy on themes from Mozart
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Fantasy on themes from Mozart
Franz Liszt
3 Petrarch Sonnets
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3 Petrarch Sonnets
Franz Liszt
Vidi in terra angelici costume
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Vidi in terra angelici costume
Franz Liszt
Pace non trovo (from 3 Sonetti di Petrarca S.270`1)
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Pace non trovo (from 3 Sonetti di Petrarca S.270`1)
Franz Liszt
Mephisto Waltz No 1
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Mephisto Waltz No 1
Franz Liszt
Pace non trovo (3 Sonetti dell Patrarca, S270)
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Pace non trovo (3 Sonetti dell Patrarca, S270)
Franz Liszt
Piano Concerto no 2 in A major
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Piano Concerto no 2 in A major
Franz Liszt
La Lugubre gondola S.200
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La Lugubre gondola S.200
Franz Liszt
Sonnetto no. 47 del Petrarch
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Sonnetto no. 47 del Petrarch
Franz Liszt
Concert paraphrase on an operatic theme (Verdi Ernani)
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Concert paraphrase on an operatic theme (Verdi Ernani)
Franz Liszt
Etudes d'execution transcendante S.139 (Harmonies)
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Etudes d'execution transcendante S.139 (Harmonies)
Franz Liszt
Etudes d'execution transcendante S.139: No 10
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Etudes d'execution transcendante S.139: No 10
Franz Liszt
Tarantelle di bravura d'après la tarantelle de La Muette de Portici (ver. 2)
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Tarantelle di bravura d'après la tarantelle de La Muette de Portici (ver. 2)
Richard Wagner
Isolde's Liebestod from Tristan und Isolde
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Isolde's Liebestod from Tristan und Isolde
Franz Liszt
Liebeslied S566a after Widmung
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Liebeslied S566a after Widmung
Franz Liszt
Piano Sonata in B minor, S.178
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Piano Sonata in B minor, S.178
Franz Liszt
Im Rhein, im schönen Strome
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Im Rhein, im schönen Strome
Franz Liszt
Isoldens Liebestod, S447 (after Tristan und Isolde by Richard Wagner)
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Isoldens Liebestod, S447 (after Tristan und Isolde by Richard Wagner)
Robert Schumann
Widmung from Liederkreise, S.566
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Widmung from Liederkreise, S.566
Franz Schubert
Standchen (Horch, horch! die Lerch) (D.889)
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Standchen (Horch, horch! die Lerch) (D.889)
Franz Schubert
Standchen (after Schubert)
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Standchen (after Schubert)
Franz Liszt
Valse impromptu, S.213
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Valse impromptu, S.213
Franz Liszt
Sposalizio (from Années de pèlerinage, book 2)
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Sposalizio (from Années de pèlerinage, book 2)
Franz Liszt
Hungarian Rhapsody in A minor, S.244 no.13
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Hungarian Rhapsody in A minor, S.244 no.13
Franz Liszt
Piano Sonata in B minor S.178
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Piano Sonata in B minor S.178
Franz Liszt
Deuxième Valse oublieé, S 215/2
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Deuxième Valse oublieé, S 215/2
Franz Liszt
Piano Concerto No.1 in E flat, S.124
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Piano Concerto No.1 in E flat, S.124
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