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Hyperion Records

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Track(s) taken from CDA67101/2
Recording details: August 1995
Unknown, Unknown
Produced by Tryggvi Tryggvason
Engineered by Tryggvi Tryggvason
Release date: November 1996
Total duration: 16 minutes 0 seconds

'A major revelation of nineteenth-century ideas and techniques. There is musical nourishment here as well as entertainment' (Gramophone)

'This new two-CD set is as fascinating as any and contains many recordings which are thought to be first, and which are probably the first performances at all for more than 100 years. A pair of discs to which I shall often return, marvelling at the brio that Leslie Howard unfailingly brings to this taxing music' (Classic CD)

'Obras brillantes, repletas de fuerza y apasionamiento, pero portadoras de un profundo sentido poético que ahora son interpretadas por un magistral Leslie Howard' (La Revista Integral)

Réminiscences des Huguenots – Grande fantaisie dramatique sur des thèmes de l'opéra de Meyerbeer, S412iii
1842; third version
1832/6; Les Huguenots

Introduction  EnglishFrançaisDeutsch
Liszt’s Meyerbeer fantasies occupy an important place amongst his operatic piano works, and happily force us to reconsider the general case for Meyerbeer’s music. Les Huguenots has been successfully revived on the stage several times in the late twentieth century but, like the revivals of Le Prophète and L’Africaine, this has usually been as a vehicle for the art of particular singers rather than an act of homage to Meyerbeer himself, and much cavalier criticism of the music has been made. Meyerbeer, who held the Paris stage unopposed for decades and who was gladly or grudgingly admired by all his contemporaries, Chopin, Rossini, Berlioz, and Wagner included, deserves rather more than that. At his best, Meyerbeer is thoroughly original in his turn of melodic phrase and in his harmonic language, and his dramaturgy is excellent. This originality is clear even when viewed through the prism of a Liszt fantasy, where Liszt’s imagination also catches fire from such fine material. Liszt’s Huguenots fantasy was first completed in 1836, and published the following year. The original conception was enormous and ran something over twenty minutes in performance. Shortly afterwards, Liszt published an intermediate version which was shortened by one large cut, but for the reissue in 1842 he prepared a new version using a copy of the first edition to make changes. The tightening consists of the elimination of the Andante from the Raoul/Valentine duet and the Chorus of the Assassins from the finale, and the references to Luther’s hymn Ein’ feste Burg ist unser Gott (‘A mighty fortress is our God’) are reinforced by its use in the final bars. The fantasy is otherwise almost entirely based on material from the aforementioned duet but the novel structure of continuous variation is entirely Liszt’s own.

from notes by Leslie Howard © 1996

Other albums featuring this work
'Liszt: Complete Piano Music' (CDS44501/98)
Liszt: Complete Piano Music
MP3 £160.00FLAC £160.00ALAC £160.00Buy by post £200.00 CDS44501/98  99CDs Boxed set + book (at a special price)  
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