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The Liszt Society Launch
23 February, 2017
Formerly based in London, pianists Coady Green and Christopher Wayne Smith bring to Melbourne the concept of the Liszt Society, a regular series of recitals, and an annual Liszt Piano Prize. The Society will introduce audiences to rare, lesser known works of Liszt alongside the works that everyone knows and loves.
The recital includes performances of the six Liszt piano Rhapsodies, adapted for four hands. As far as we can ascertain this is the premiere performance of the complete six rhapsodies in Liszt’s duet transcriptions. This will be an evening of spectacular music making, to launch an exciting new venture.
Franz Liszt: Hungarian Rhapsodies for piano duet
No. 1 in F minor, S621/1 (after Rapsodie hongroise XIV, S244/14)
No. 2 in D minor/G major, S621/2 (after Rapsodie hongroise II, S244/2)
No. 3 in D major, S621/3 (after Rapsodie hongroise VI S244/6)
No. 4 in C sharp minor, S621/4 (after Rapsodie hongroise XII, S244/12)
No. 5 in E minor, S621/5 (after Rapsodie hongroise V, S244/5) ‘Héroïde-Élégiaque’
No. 6 in E flat major, S621/6 (after Rapsodie hongroise IX, S244/9) ‘Pester Carneval’
Under Liszt’s instruction, and with his collaboration, the composer Franz Doppler completed orchestral arrangements of a selection of six of Liszt’s Hungarian Rhapsodies in 1860. Liszt was pleased with them and even mentions in his will of that year that credit must be shared with Doppler for the work. However, ten years later, when Liszt came to prepare the works for publication, he made root and branch alterations, not just effectively re-orchestrating the pieces, but making many significant changes in the shape of the compositions as he went. In a typically generous gesture, he left Doppler’s name in equal typeface to his own on the title-pages of the publications.
Liszt’s arrangements for piano duet of 1874 are based on the orchestral versions rather than on the original piano solos, although in the case of nos. 4 and 6 the keys of the orchestral versions – D minor and D major – are substituted with the original solo piano keys of C sharp minor and E flat major. The numbering of these pieces has been a cataloguer’s nightmare from the start. In this recital, we give the final version of the numbering, where orchestral/duet no. 2 is parallel to piano solo no. 2.
Pensioners/Full-time students/MEAA members