- Paperback: 624 pages
- Publisher: Cornell University Press; 2nd Revised edition edition (25 Nov. 1997)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0801484537
- ISBN-13: 978-0801484537
- Product Dimensions: 15.4 x 3.9 x 23.5 cm
- Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 326,777 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Franz Liszt: The Final Years, 1861-86 v. 3: The Final Years, 1861-1886 Paperback – 25 Nov 1997
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"Alan Walker's biography of Liszt . . . has been widely hailed as a groundbreaking work of scholarship. . . . Not only did his dogged research correct numerous, mostly damaging preconceptions about Liszt, but his cogent musical analyses made the case for the importance of the music. . . . Love him or hate him as a saint or a sinner, Liszt still has the capacity to stir great passions . . . and Mr. Walker has done a great service in correcting many misconceptions and thus raising the question about the true character of Liszt." Johanna Keller, The New York Times. January 14, 2001"
"A conscientious scholar passionate about his subject. Mr. Walker makes the man and his age come to life. These three volumes will be the definitive work to which all subsequent Liszt biographies will aspire." Harold C. Schonberg, Wall Street Journal"
"What distinguishes Walker from Liszt's dozens of earlier biographers is that he is equally strong on the music and the life. A formidable musicologist with a lively polemical style, he discusses the composer's works with greater understanding and clarity than any previous biographer. And whereas many have recycled the same erroneous, often damaging information, Walker has relied on his own prodigious, globe-trotting research, a project spanning twenty-five years. The result is a textured portrait of Liszt and his times without rival." Elliot Ravetz, Time"
"You can't help but keep turning the pages, wondering how it will all turn out: and Walker's accumulated readings of Liszt's music have to be taken seriously indeed." D. Kern Holoman, New York Review of Books"
"The prose is so lively that the reader is often swept along by the narrative. . . . This three-part work . . . is now the definitive work on Liszt in English and belongs in all music collections." Library Journal"
From the Back Cover
This book is an in depth look at Liszt and anything connected with Liszt during the years from 1848 to 1861.See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
Liszt has suffered at the hands of his biographers in the 20th century - Ernest Newman’s disgraceful character assassination, Sacheverell Sitwell’s friendly but inaccurate biography, and Eleanor Perenyi’s quirky volume which stops abruptly in 1861, to name but three. Walker unpicks the many controversies surrounding Liszt’s long and complicated life, and explores the man, his life and his music in a compelling narrative.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
This is a magnificent biography. I have read all three volumes and recommend them to every music lover. Liszt was significant in so many ways, as a nurturer of other composers, as a voice of his native land, and of course as a friend and victim of Wagner (but who was NOT a victim of that anti-musical megalomaniac?)
This biography covers other complex musical relationships existing between Liszt and the most famous composers of that time, including Brahms and both Schumanns. Then too there are stories of difficulties in the musical world beyond the personal, such as with the dedication of a memorial to Beethoven at his birthplace.
Without a doubt, a wonderful history of that thrilling era in European music when sonority and actual human passion meant something to the creators.
Walker's ambition has been to weed in the marshland of legends and errors and inaccuracies in the prevalent image of Liszt's life, spread since the composer's own lifetime. It is the scholarly result of his incredible efforts to get a clearer picture of his life. This is a truer picture of a mysteriously legendary composer than we have had earlier - though it is a very kind and maybe a bit uncritical portrait we get of this charismatic super-genius.
Liszt's position in European music and culture in all during his active life was incomprehensibly great, maybe greater and more influential than any composer ever had. It is a tremendous adventure to read about all his glorious triumphs as a virtuoso pianist and as a composer, a conductor, a teacher and a musical promotor, a writer, a freedom symbol and patriot, a friend of Chopin's and Wagner's and many other activities and characteristics. I have been rapturously plunged into these three volumes for a very long time, and I wish every music lover to enjoy them as much as I have. All three of them!
Anyone truly interested in reading the definitive biography on Liszt cannot consider anything else but these three volumes by Mr. Walker. I came upon them by chance, and now do I consider myself very lucky. He has since the publication of the third volume released some complimentary books, with more specific topics and correspondence of the time. Alan Walker is indeed The Liszt erudite. Period!
The info in those books is astounding. Walker presents a true picture of Liszt's amazing life. I would highly recommend all of the volumes. Because of Walker, Liszt's music is getting better known though much prejudice still exists from Liszt's time to this very day against his music esp. here in the USA.
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