Franz Liszt (1811-1886)
Let me begin by saying that I just adore Franz Liszt. He is one of my all-time favourites. I love the way the sudden changes in the pace of his music take place and the way the different tunes conspire to create an eerie environment. The deliberate momentary cacophonies that interrupt the melody occasionally are probably what make his music so special for me. Inspite of being situated in the cultural universe of Hungary, the way he manages to be so very different from the Austro-German tradition on the one hand and the Russian one on the other, is breathtaking. I also find his style quite different from what Bartók, the other great Hungarian composer, created eventually.
I was going through a particularly dense Liszt-phase a couple of months back. It so happened that during this period we produced Ionesco’s Rhinoceros at my university. In charge of direction, I was elated to be able to use a couple pieces of Liszt as background score of the play: Hungarian Rhapsody no. 14 in F minor and no. 3 in B flat major. So happy!