Author Topic: Franz Liszt (1811-86)  (Read 56749 times)

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snyprrr

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Liszt's Recital of the Strange & Macabre
« Reply #160 on: April 09, 2010, 08:56:23 PM »
Let us find a pianist, and get a recording situation, and make an album along these lines:



Apparitions
Csardas macabre
Marche funebre (153 or 226)
Mephisto polka
Valse melancolique

...perhaps along with the standard 'Late' fare:


Lugubre Gondola I & II
Unstern sinistre
Nuages gris
En reve
RW-Venezia
Schlagflos(huh?)
Romance oubliee
Valse oubliees
Trauer vorspeil & Trauermarsche
Receuillements
Am Grabe RW



...perhaps one or two of the Etudes?...


Any ideas? I've only got two cds on hand :-[ ::) ;) ;D




Offline knight66

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Re: Franz Liszt (1811-86)
« Reply #161 on: April 09, 2010, 09:28:46 PM »
I have removed the querulous exchanges where certain people...you know who you are....descended to personal remarks. I dunno what it is about Liszt that prompts these little outbreaks; but it confirms me in my long held opinion; to pretty much keep away from him.

Let's not progress through the Mods having to deal with this through PMs, then PMs with threats, then public executions. How about you guys stop pulling one another's hair.

Now, is there more to be said about Liszt?

Knight
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Offline zamyrabyrd

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Re: Franz Liszt (1811-86)
« Reply #162 on: April 09, 2010, 10:34:26 PM »
What do y'all think of the Symphonic Poems and Oratorios? Liszt expended an immense effort on them in the latter part of his career.  They were not exactly appreciated in his lifetime and pretty much ignored in ours.

The problem with the orchestral works, as I see it, have to do with "program music" that offers a bit by bit description of the subject. Berlioz' orchestral works come to mind but are more daring (in my opinion) than a hybrid of symphony and tonal poem which Liszt's works seem to resemble.

Liszt's piano works though are brilliantly innovative and push the boundaries of technique, form and harmony. I think his best works are for this instrument and/or combined with orchestra.

ZB
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Offline Ten thumbs

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Re: Franz Liszt (1811-86)
« Reply #163 on: April 10, 2010, 02:02:52 AM »

Liszt's piano works though are brilliantly innovative and push the boundaries of technique, form and harmony. I think his best works are for this instrument and/or combined with orchestra.

ZB
I believe that if you actually examined the forms used by Liszt in his tone poems instead of falling for the pretense that they have none, you would be surprised.
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Offline Lethevich

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Re: Franz Liszt (1811-86)
« Reply #164 on: April 10, 2010, 02:38:41 AM »
What do y'all think of the Symphonic Poems and Oratorios? Liszt expended an immense effort on them in the latter part of his career.  They were not exactly appreciated in his lifetime and pretty much ignored in ours.

The problem with the orchestral works, as I see it, have to do with "program music" that offers a bit by bit description of the subject. Berlioz' orchestral works come to mind but are more daring (in my opinion) than a hybrid of symphony and tonal poem which Liszt's works seem to resemble.
I find them to be surprisingly good each time I hear them. I go in expecting vulgar orchestration, but there generally isn't. Structure in a classical sense is a problem, but if this craving is abandoned they become rather magnificent creations, and highly operatic. I haven't bothered reading the programmes, though.

A problem I find is that when I think of my favourites, I simply think of the most performed ones (excluding Les Préludes for already having "made it" to a major concert work): Mazeppa and Tasso are the biggies. There doesn't seem to be much of a decline in quality beyond the well-known works though. Héroïde Funèbre has a Berliozian atmosphere, Hunnenschlacht is great fun, and Orpheus really grabbed me when hearing a good recording of it (Nikolai Golovanov on Great Conductors of the 20th Century).

The very obscure ones seem to be Ce qu'on entend sur la montagne and Von der Wiege bis zum Grabe, which incidentely seem to be his first and last compositions in the form. The last is of note for being composed around 25 years after the others. I don't remember much about these two - definitely something for the listening pile.
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kishnevi

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Re: Franz Liszt (1811-86)
« Reply #165 on: April 10, 2010, 04:49:20 PM »
I find them to be surprisingly good each time I hear them. I go in expecting vulgar orchestration, but there generally isn't. Structure in a classical sense is a problem, but if this craving is abandoned they become rather magnificent creations, and highly operatic. I haven't bothered reading the programmes, though.

A problem I find is that when I think of my favourites, I simply think of the most performed ones (excluding Les Préludes for already having "made it" to a major concert work): Mazeppa and Tasso are the biggies. There doesn't seem to be much of a decline in quality beyond the well-known works though. Héroïde Funèbre has a Berliozian atmosphere, Hunnenschlacht is great fun, and Orpheus really grabbed me when hearing a good recording of it (Nikolai Golovanov on Great Conductors of the 20th Century).

The very obscure ones seem to be Ce qu'on entend sur la montagne and Von der Wiege bis zum Grabe, which incidentely seem to be his first and last compositions in the form. The last is of note for being composed around 25 years after the others. I don't remember much about these two - definitely something for the listening pile.

There is a newly released Decca box (4 CDs) of the complete symphonic poems (Haitink/LPO) which is relatively inexpensive and, on my first listen last week, sounds reasonably good.  It's probably a good way to get the not so well known works as a group, and the liner notes, while not diffuse, give a bit of information on the literary or artistic source for each of the works. 

I've also got a recording by Immersaal and Anima Aeterna on period instruments that includes Les Preludes, Mazeppa, Totentanz (the piano is an 1880s Erard), two of the Hungarian Rhapsodies, and From the Cradle to the Grave that might be of interest to you if you don't feel the need for a complete set.

Scarpia

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Re: Franz Liszt (1811-86)
« Reply #166 on: April 11, 2010, 06:17:48 PM »
There is a newly released Decca box (4 CDs) of the complete symphonic poems (Haitink/LPO) which is relatively inexpensive and, on my first listen last week, sounds reasonably good.  It's probably a good way to get the not so well known works as a group, and the liner notes, while not diffuse, give a bit of information on the literary or artistic source for each of the works. 

I've also got a recording by Immersaal and Anima Aeterna on period instruments that includes Les Preludes, Mazeppa, Totentanz (the piano is an 1880s Erard), two of the Hungarian Rhapsodies, and From the Cradle to the Grave that might be of interest to you if you don't feel the need for a complete set.

This set looks attractive, but I have Masur's Liszt recordings with the Gawandhausorchester (EMI recordings) on a pair of 2cd sets.  Not identical repertoire, but a fair bit of overlap.  Anyone here head both sets who can characterize the difference?
« Last Edit: April 11, 2010, 06:19:26 PM by Scarpia »

Offline Josquin des Prez

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Re: Franz Liszt (1811-86)
« Reply #167 on: April 11, 2010, 07:15:47 PM »
Personally i've been pretty happy with Arpad Joo. Not bad for a recording which i bought without any prior knowledge or insight. My favored Tone Poem is of course the last one.
« Last Edit: April 11, 2010, 07:20:12 PM by Josquin des Prez »

kishnevi

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Re: Franz Liszt (1811-86)
« Reply #168 on: April 11, 2010, 07:34:04 PM »
This set looks attractive, but I have Masur's Liszt recordings with the Gawandhausorchester (EMI recordings) on a pair of 2cd sets.  Not identical repertoire, but a fair bit of overlap.  Anyone here head both sets who can characterize the difference?

The Haitink set consists of all thirteen symphonic poems with Mephisto Waltz No. 1 as filler.
CD 1
Ce qu'on entend sur la montagne
Tasso
Les Preludes
CD 2
Orpheus
Prometheus
Mazeppa
Festklange
CD 3
Heriode funebre
Hungaria
Hamlet
CD 4
Hunnenschlacht
Die Ideale
Von der Wiege bis zum Grabe
Mephisto Waltz No. 1


Is there any of this that's not on the Masur set?  Or anything other than Mephisto Waltz 2 that's on Masur but not on Haitink?

I have some of the Masur on an EMI budget release: Tasso, Les Preludes, Orpheus, Mazeppa, Mephisto Waltz No. 2--which is how I know the Waltz is part of his set.

Scarpia

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Re: Franz Liszt (1811-86)
« Reply #169 on: April 11, 2010, 08:27:23 PM »
Actually, there is a 5CD set from Masur which has the 13 symphonic poems, plus Dante and Faust symphonies, and the two episodes from Faust.  The four discs I have omit some of the symphonic poems in favor of the Faust symphony.  I'm mainly curious as to whether the performances are noticeably different in the two sets.

Offline Sergeant Rock

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Re: Franz Liszt (1811-86)
« Reply #170 on: April 12, 2010, 01:31:39 AM »
Is there any of this that's not on the Masur set?  Or anything other than Mephisto Waltz 2 that's on Masur but not on Haitink?

The only thing not on Masur's set is Mephisto Waltz No.1. Included in the 7CD Masur box but not Haitink's are these works:

Mephisto Waltz #2
Faust Symphony
Dante Symphony
2 episodes from Faust
The Piano Concertos with Béroff
Schubert Wanderer Fantasy trans. by Liszt for piano and orchestra
Weber Polonaise brilliante trans. by Liszt for piano and orchestra
Fantasie über ungarische Volksmelodien for piano and orchestra
Fantasie über Motive aus Beethovens Ruinen von Athens for piano and orchestra
Grande Fantasie symphonique sur des thèmes de "Leilo" de Berlioz for piano and orchestra
Malédiction for piano and orchestra
Totentanz, Paraphrase über "Dies Irae" for piano and orchestra

Although I own the Masur box, and it has much more than Haitink, I ordered Haitink because, if I recall correctly, his cycle of tone poems was highly praised when it was first released. In any case I like the music well enough to want multiple versions and Haitink is dirt cheap (16 Euro at Amazon).

Sarge
« Last Edit: April 12, 2010, 01:37:16 AM by Sergeant Rock »
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karlhenning

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Re: Franz Liszt (1811-86)
« Reply #171 on: April 12, 2010, 02:41:26 AM »
I've been enchanted by a Noseda/BBC Phil disc with the Faust Symphony (version sans chœurs) and Von der Wiege bis zum Grabe, which was a gift from an old friend.  So . . . I'm heading to a nearby shop today to fetch in the Dante Symphony by the same forces.

Scarpia

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Re: Franz Liszt (1811-86)
« Reply #172 on: April 12, 2010, 09:55:48 AM »
A listen to Masur's recording of the Heroide Funebre was very satisfying.  Beautiful, vivid sonorities from the Gewanthaus orchestra, vigorous articulation, very good late analog sound (a bit on the close side).  I'm beginning to regret I only have the pair of 2-fers and not one of the bigger box sets.  Haitink is seeming superfluous at this point. 


Scarpia

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Re: Franz Liszt (1811-86)
« Reply #173 on: April 17, 2010, 03:23:05 PM »
Been listening to more of the Masur/Gewandhaus recordings of the Liszt symphonic poems (Hungeria, 2 episodes from Lenau's Faust and Prometheus) and continue to be impressed, with the works and the performances.  The recordings are uncharactistically vivid for EMI, and the the orchestra produces beautiful sounds under Masur.  The works are a lot of fun, with orchestration which is often brilliant if not subtle, arresting themes, interesting development.  Perhaps the biggest surprise is that these pieces are not rhapsodic or meandering, but generally have a clear musical structure.  First class works, I'd say.

abidoful

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Re: Franz Liszt (1811-86)
« Reply #174 on: April 18, 2010, 12:44:19 AM »
I'm now exploring Liszt's chamber stuff  (I enjoyd many happy moment's in  my teens with the solo piano works- and later with the Faust Symhony) 8)

Works for violin and piano: two duos (in c-sharp, + the "grand duo concertant").




Offline Lethevich

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Re: Franz Liszt (1811-86)
« Reply #175 on: April 18, 2010, 02:58:48 AM »
I'm now exploring Liszt's chamber stuff  (I enjoyd many happy moment's in  my teens with the solo piano works- and later with the Faust Symhony) 8)

Works for violin and piano: two duos (in c-sharp, + the "grand duo concertant").


Liszt's chamber music is patchy, often transcriptions of other works, but I found much to enjoy on this disc, which shares its programming with various complimentary works by Alkan.
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karlhenning

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Re: Franz Liszt (1811-86)
« Reply #176 on: April 18, 2010, 03:23:05 AM »
An excellent disc, Sara!  I didn't know you had that 'un.

(Of course, there's much I don't know about your music collection
; )

Offline Lethevich

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Re: Franz Liszt (1811-86)
« Reply #177 on: April 18, 2010, 03:55:18 AM »
I don't own half as much as I listen to - being cheap and poor is the pits :P
Peanut butter, flour and sugar do not make cookies. They make FIRE.

greg

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Re: Franz Liszt (1811-86)
« Reply #178 on: April 30, 2010, 03:10:13 PM »
An orchestral transcription of Liszt's Nuages Gris.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p9rFJ_steiU

sounds ultra-Second Viennese, doesn't it?  :D
« Last Edit: April 30, 2010, 03:13:04 PM by Greg »

Offline Dax

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Re: Franz Liszt (1811-86)
« Reply #179 on: April 30, 2010, 11:18:26 PM »
There are certainly some interesting sounds  but it's a ludicrous version which doesn't bear too much relation to the original - which has served merely as a launching pad for what we have here. There are added lines which really don't work. And the mega-slow speed is ridiculous.

Here's Holliger's version of Unstern which is rather less preposterous, yet still wrong-headed. Seems as though we need to have as much contrast as possible rather than establishing an insistent resonance.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i1_njfYoXp0&NR=1