A six-month tour through Spain and Portugal left its mark … Fascinated by the temperamental melodies of the Iberian peninsula, Liszt integrated elements of this music into his piano works. The character of the “Rhapsodie espagnole” is very different to that of its Hungarian counterparts – instead of Hungarian boisterousness and deep melancholy, one encounters Spanish noblesse and elegance. At the centre are the age-old theme “Folies d’Espagne” and a much loved folkdance melody from Aragon (“Jota”); both of which Liszt worked into a dazzling virtuosic series of variations. Our Urtext edition contains a well-informed preface by the Liszt researcher Mária Eckhardt.
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While preparing her biography of Liszt, Lina Ramann asked the composer in December 1875 about a work that she could not find in his Thematic Catalogue of 1855: “Is the Spanish Rhapsody (?) an artistic result of your journey to Spain of 1845?” Liszt replied in April 1876: “Written in Rome (circa 1863) as a reminiscence of my Spanish journey.” (L. Ramann, Lisztiana, p. … more
About the composer
The most famous piano virtuoso of the nineteenth century is regarded as the most influential artist and composer (with Berlioz, Wagner) of the so-called New German School. His immense musical oeuvre comprises, above all else, works for solo piano, including numerous transcriptions; he also devised the symphonic poem. Important, too, are his sacred and secular choral works and songs.
|1811||Born in Doborján/Raiding (Sopron) on October 22, son of an official in the service of Prince Esterházy. First piano lessons from his father, early first attempts at composition, first public performance at age nine.|
|1822||Relocation of the family to Vienna, studies with Carl Czerny and Antonio Salieri.|
|1823||Relocation of the family to Paris. Composition studies with Ferdinando Paër and Antonín Reicha (1826). Performances in salons, concerts.|
|1824–27||Concert tours through France, to England and Switzerland. Composition of opera paraphrases for piano.|
|1830||Acquaintance with Berlioz, self-study by reading. He becomes Parisian society’sfavourite pianist and piano teacher.|
|1835||He moves to Switzerland with Countess Marie d’Agoult: their first child together, Blandine-Rachel, is born here. He continues concertizing in Paris.|
|from 1839||Continuous concert tours throughout Europe.|
|from 1847||Symphonic poems, including No. 2, “Tasso: lamento e trionfo”; No. 1, “Ce qu‘on entend sur la montagne” (‘Bergsymphonie,’ ‘Mountain Symphony’); “A Faust Symphony in Three Character Pictures”; “A Symphony to Dante’s Divine Comedy” (‘Dante Symphony’); as well as [No. 11], “Hunnenschlacht” (“Battle of the Huns”).|
|1848–61||Kapellmeister in Weimar; he advocates for progressive music (Wagner, Schumann, Berlioz).|
|1857–62||Oratorio, “The Legend of St. Elisabeth.”|
|1861–68||Resident in Rome.|
|1865||Takes minor holy orders.|
|1871||Appointed Hungarian court councilor; he lives in Rome, Weimar, and Budapest.|
|1886||Death in Bayreuth on July 31.|
About the authors
Liszt’s eigen vingerzettingen maken deze uitgave bovendien van onschatbare waarde voor de pianotechniek.
Ein sorgfältig erstellter Urtext, ein großzügiges Druckbild und wohlüberlegte Wendestellen machen das Spiel aus dieser Ausgabe zu einem reinen Vergnügen.