Much has been written about the uncanny insight into Don Giovanni
which Liszt shows by taking the seduction duet (with variations), the drinking song and the music of the statue of the dead commendatore and weaving a commentary upon the moral pith of the original. Even Bernard Shaw (who dismissed a masterpiece like the ‘Dante Symphony’) was obliged to rate the piece very highly, and indeed the Don has withstood the vicissitudes of public taste and has more or less remained in the repertoire. On this record the fullest possible version of the piece is presented, right down to a short cadenza in the first variation, which is to be found on a leaf in the Library of Congress but which was in fact published in the shorter two-piano version of the work, and actually postulated for inclusion in the solo version in the excellent critico-practical edition of Busoni.
from notes by Leslie Howard © 1990