After Liszt, Ferenc Erkel (1810–1893) is the best-known nineteenth-century Hungarian composer. (His statue is to be found beside that of Liszt outside the Budapest Opera.) And of course Erkel really has a prior claim to that privilege, since his Hungarian operas were runaway successes in their day and are still performed in his homeland. Liszt is really in his element here, and uses quite a number of themes in a very Hungarian-Rhapsodic fantasy which he prepared for publication but which, for some reason, remains in manuscript.
from notes by Leslie Howard © 1994