Full Scope of Liszt’s Compositional Output is Explored with Both New and Catalog Releases
October 22, 2011 will mark the 200th anniversary of the birth of composer, pianist, conductor and teacher Franz Liszt. The celebrations have already started with a number of concerts and new recordings and they will continue throughout the year. Deutsche Grammophon & Decca pay tribute both with a host of new recordings as well as the revival of many catalog gems. In addition, a number of online resources will launch starting with www.Liszt200.com.
Decca started the celebration with Harmonies du Soir, Nelson Freire’s all-new recording of selections of Liszt’s solo piano music. Released on May 17th, the album has already received critical acclaim: “…what he does is so beautiful, he seems the return of some great master, someone like Josef Hoffman, in how he combines an exquisite touch — every note is a drop of gold — with great discipline and muscular solidity.” (Boston Globe) The album includes selections from eight works which span Liszt’s compositional career including Ballade no. 2 in B minor, Consolations, Valse oubliée in F sharp major and more.
Deutsche Grammophon & Decca together follow with two catalog items: Liszt: The Collection and Liszt: Wild & Crazy, both released today. The Collection is a deluxe box set of 34 CDs which surveys Liszt’s vast output. Given Liszt’s immense number of compositions this set is an overview and touches on various genres but is not a complete collection. Included are 2 CDs of works for piano and orchestra, 7 CDs of orchestral works, 12 CDs of solo piano music, 2 CDs of organ music, 5 CDs of lieder and 6 CDs of sacred choral works. In addition to the inclusion of many rarely recorded works the set offers great interpreters and benchmark recordings as only Deutsche Grammophon & Decca can. The list includes Zimerman, Barenboim, Arrau, Bolet, Kempff, Ott, Sinopoli, Solti, Haitink, Fischer-Dieskau, Fassbaender and many more.