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Liszt: Hungarian Rhapsodies / Georges Cziffra


Release Date: 04/10/2001 
Label:  Emi Great Recordings Of The Century Catalog #: 67555   Spars Code: ADD 
Composer:  Franz Liszt
Performer:  György Cziffra
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 16 Mins. 

CD not available: This title is currently only available as an MP3 download.  

Notes and Editorial Reviews

Cziffra's one and only recital appearance in London during the 1960s caused a furore. His Chopin was hotly disputed, his dazzling playing of Liszt took the public by storm, and if you listen to this disc you will hear why. His technique is phenomenal, octaves tossed off with power and ease, while his passage work carves a scorched earth policy up and down the keyboard. As a fellow Hungarian, and with plenty of gypsy blood in his veins, Cziffra's response to Liszt's Rhapsodies also manages to get beyond pyrotechnics to the folk-heart of this idiosyncratic style. This is not music to look down upon, neither should it be the territory of pianistic peacocks, for it is serious music of the highest order requiring an improvisatory feel for the Read more ebb and flow of the quintessential rubato required. Every now and again, he launches an attack of fortissimo which has the assaulting effect on one's ears of an exploding grenade. His pianistic flourishes stretch every sinew, as much of the listener as of Cziffra himself we get carried along, yet his playing is also expressively tender where it needs to be. In his hands the piano sounds like an orchestra, and these interpretations could well be the nearest we ever get to Liszt's own playing. Cziffra (1921-1994) had a chequered career that ended with him as a reclusive figure after the tragic death of his conductor son. After escaping Soviet-dominated Hungary in 1956 he settled in Paris, where these recordings were made over several sessions during a three-year period at the Salle Wagram. As one reviewer wrote of him when he took Western Europe by storm at the time, 'he combines the precision of a metronome with the electrical discharge of a thunderstorm'. On the evidence of this disc one can well understand the choice of words.

-- Christopher Fifield, MusicWeb International Read less

Works on This Recording

1.
Hungarian Rhapsodies (19) for Piano, S 244: no 2 in C sharp minor by Franz Liszt
Performer:  György Cziffra (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1847; Hungary 
Date of Recording: 1972-75 
Venue:  Salle Wagram, Paris, France 
Length: 9 Minutes 7 Secs. 
2.
Hungarian Rhapsodies (19) for Piano, S 244: no 6 in D flat major by Franz Liszt
Performer:  György Cziffra (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1846-1885; Weimar, Germany 
Date of Recording: 1972-75 
Venue:  Salle Wagram, Paris, France 
Length: 6 Minutes 24 Secs. 
3.
Hungarian Rhapsodies (19) for Piano, S 244: no 8 in F sharp minor by Franz Liszt
Performer:  György Cziffra (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1846-1885; Weimar, Germany 
Date of Recording: 1972-75 
Venue:  Salle Wagram, Paris, France 
Length: 5 Minutes 43 Secs. 
4.
Hungarian Rhapsodies (19) for Piano, S 244: no 9 in E flat major by Franz Liszt
Performer:  György Cziffra (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1846-1885; Weimar, Germany 
Date of Recording: 1972-75 
Venue:  Salle Wagram, Paris, France 
Length: 9 Minutes 59 Secs. 
5.
Hungarian Rhapsodies (19) for Piano, S 244: no 10 in E major by Franz Liszt
Performer:  György Cziffra (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1847; Paris, France 
Date of Recording: 1972-75 
Venue:  Salle Wagram, Paris, France 
Length: 4 Minutes 50 Secs. 
6.
Hungarian Rhapsodies (19) for Piano, S 244: no 11 in A minor by Franz Liszt
Performer:  György Cziffra (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1846-1847; Weimar, Germany 
Date of Recording: 1972-75 
Venue:  Salle Wagram, Paris, France 
Length: 5 Minutes 2 Secs. 
7.
Hungarian Rhapsodies (19) for Piano, S 244: no 13 in A minor by Franz Liszt
Performer:  György Cziffra (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1846-1885; Weimar, Germany 
Date of Recording: 1972-75 
Venue:  Salle Wagram, Paris, France 
Length: 8 Minutes 23 Secs. 
8.
Hungarian Rhapsodies (19) for Piano, S 244: no 12 in C sharp minor by Franz Liszt
Performer:  György Cziffra (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1846-1885; Weimar, Germany 
Date of Recording: 1972-75 
Venue:  Salle Wagram, Paris, France 
Length: 8 Minutes 46 Secs. 
9.
Hungarian Rhapsodies (19) for Piano, S 244: no 14 in F minor by Franz Liszt
Performer:  György Cziffra (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1846-1885; Weimar, Germany 
Date of Recording: 1972-75 
Venue:  Salle Wagram, Paris, France 
Length: 10 Minutes 48 Secs. 
10.
Hungarian Rhapsodies (19) for Piano, S 244: no 15 in a "Rákóczy March" by Franz Liszt
Performer:  György Cziffra (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1846-1886 
Date of Recording: 1972-75 
Venue:  Salle Wagram, Paris, France 
Length: 5 Minutes 34 Secs. 

Sound Samples

19 Hungarian Rhapsodies S244 (2001 Digital Remaster): No. 2 in C sharp minor
19 Hungarian Rhapsodies S244 (2001 Digital Remaster): No. 6 in D flat major
19 Hungarian Rhapsodies S244 (2001 Digital Remaster): No. 8 in F sharp minor (Capriccio)
19 Hungarian Rhapsodies S244 (2001 Digital Remaster): No. 9 in E flat major (Carnival in Pest)
19 Hungarian Rhapsodies S244 (2001 Digital Remaster): No. 10 in E major (Preludio)
19 Hungarian Rhapsodies S244 (2001 Digital Remaster): No. 11 in A minor
19 Hungarian Rhapsodies S244 (2001 Digital Remaster): No. 12 in C sharp minor
19 Hungarian Rhapsodies S244 (2001 Digital Remaster): No. 13 in A minor
19 Hungarian Rhapsodies S244 (2001 Digital Remaster): No. 14 in F minor
19 Hungarian Rhapsodies S244 (2001 Digital Remaster): No. 15 in A minor (Rákóczy)

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