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I think this is the best piece liszt ever composed compeletely reflect his improvisational style from 3:55 to 5:35 I've never heard such a beautiful melody it's literally epitome of extraordinary piano writing. There is something different in this piece as if liszt speaking through it.


Last edited by Batuhan; 06/18/21 10:27 PM.


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Yes, this is an underrated piece. It was composed after Chopin's death.

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Originally Posted by ranjit
Yes, this is an underrated piece. It was composed after Chopin's death.

Yes also it's like homage to chopin



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The 2nd Polonaise is much more flashier, hence it's relative popularity, it's like 'Jean qui pleure, Jean qui rit', same as with Chopin's op.40/1 and 2, even with Liszt's Ballades, the 1st of whitch one rarely hears, sometimes the lesser played works are musically even more precious than their more well-known brother/sisters.


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I don't share the views of others who have posted so far on this thread. To me, there is too much empty bombast in a piece that just doesn't hang together. No wonder it isn't heard more.

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Underrated compared to what? It might be underrated compared to other compositions of Liszt, but it is not underrated compared to majorworks of Chopin. I think it pales in comparison to Chopin's great polonaises (Op 44, Op 53, Op 61).


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To say that it it is the best piece liszt ever composed is exaggerated. That piece has some issues in terms of overall balance and a good part sounds "empty". The second polonaise is better composed and also has more of a polonaise character, so it is more played.


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I agree with those that think this polonaise is not one of Liszt's best works although I only listened to the first half of the piece and hadn't heard it before. It would be a bizarre situation if this was really one of Liszt's best pieces yet it was extremely rarely played in concert. I can't think of any reason why that would happen.

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Wouldn't be a piece that Brahms would have fallen in sleep while listening to ... (or would it? ... bang bang bang most of the time, maybe it's just me not being in the mood :-)

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Originally Posted by newport
Wouldn't be a piece that Brahms would have fallen in sleep while listening to ...
That was Liszt's B minor Sonata.

Which is, of course grossly underrated, and deserves to be far more widely known (and played) smirk .


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Originally Posted by Sweelinck
Underrated compared to what? It might be underrated compared to other compositions of Liszt, but it is not underrated compared to majorworks of Chopin. I think it pales in comparison to Chopin's great polonaises (Op 44, Op 53, Op 61).

pales ? liszt compositional skills are greater than chopin and much more versatile yes chopin's polonaises are great and masterpieces but you can't underestimate liszt do you ever listen liszt's late works like nuages gris and funeral prelude & march he discovered atonality way before schoenberg I mean liszt is ahead of his time like 100 years

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I must add to all the above mentioned that Cziffra's execution is far from ideal, his doubling of bass notes is cheap and his overall conception doesn't help either.


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Originally Posted by Batuhan
Originally Posted by Sweelinck
Underrated compared to what? It might be underrated compared to other compositions of Liszt, but it is not underrated compared to majorworks of Chopin. I think it pales in comparison to Chopin's great polonaises (Op 44, Op 53, Op 61).

pales ? liszt compositional skills are greater than chopin and much more versatile yes chopin's polonaises are great and masterpieces but you can't underestimate liszt do you ever listen liszt's late works like nuages gris and funeral prelude & march he discovered atonality way before schoenberg I mean liszt is ahead of his time like 100 years
Discovering atonality would not elevate my opinion of Liszt's music. My feeling is that Liszt too often subordinated musical aesthetic to technical virtuosity, and that was certainly a distraction for me in this polonaise.

If this is Liszt's best composition, why would I need to hear others to elevate his status? We all have aesthetic preferences that lead to different rankings of composers, but I don't think history has been unfair to Liszt. Chopin is widely considered the greater composer of the two.


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Originally Posted by Sweelinck
We all have aesthetic preferences that lead to different rankings of composers, but I don't think history has been unfair to Liszt. Chopin is widely considered the greater composer of the two.
Even Liszt himself admitted that.

In a letter written twenty-seven years after Chopin’s death to Carolyne Sayn-Wittgenstein Liszt commented, “no one compares to him: he shines lonely, peerless in the firmament of art.” smile

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Chopin was not a fan of Liszt's music. His faves were Bach and Mozart. He was also not a fan of Beethoven.

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Originally Posted by dolce sfogato
I must add to all the above mentioned that Cziffra's execution is far from ideal, his doubling of bass notes is cheap and his overall conception doesn't help either.

I would agree with that. Cziffra is a great pianist, but I did not find this version to be very convincing.


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Originally Posted by Carey
Originally Posted by Sweelinck
We all have aesthetic preferences that lead to different rankings of composers, but I don't think history has been unfair to Liszt. Chopin is widely considered the greater composer of the two.
Even Liszt himself admitted that.

In a letter written twenty-seven years after Chopin’s death to Carolyne Sayn-Wittgenstein Liszt commented, “no one compares to him: he shines lonely, peerless in the firmament of art.” smile
I disagree. Liszt is known to have been very generous towards other composers, even premiering their works and not withholding praise in general. All he says here is that Chopin is without peer, unique, not "the best".

Liszt is pretty much equally good. His compositions are stunning, and I think that saying that there are "too many notes" is personal preference. The fact of the matter is that the texture would not be the same without all of those notes, and the intensity of emotion which he can generate is unparalleled even by Chopin imo.

I don't know if I would say the whole piece is great, but certainly 3:55-5:35 is incredible.

Liszt was far better at textural writing than Chopin imo. I think history has been unfair to Liszt, not in terms of how often it is performed, but how so many of his works have been branded "empty virtuosity" when they are anything but.

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Quote
I don't know if I would say the whole piece is great, but certainly 3:55-5:35 is incredible.
...
I think history has been unfair to Liszt, not in terms of how often it is performed, but how so many of his works have been branded "empty virtuosity" when they are anything but.
Describing the music as "empty virtuosity" is a much stronger statement than "too often subordinated the musical aesthetic to technical virtuosity. I don't think music historians are any more negative in their assessment of Liszt than your comment that 3:55 to 5:35 is great, but the rest of the piece isn't.


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Originally Posted by ranjit
Originally Posted by Carey
Originally Posted by Sweelinck
We all have aesthetic preferences that lead to different rankings of composers, but I don't think history has been unfair to Liszt. Chopin is widely considered the greater composer of the two.
Even Liszt himself admitted that.

In a letter written twenty-seven years after Chopin’s death to Carolyne Sayn-Wittgenstein Liszt commented, “no one compares to him: he shines lonely, peerless in the firmament of art.” smile
I disagree. Liszt is known to have been very generous towards other composers, even premiering their works and not withholding praise in general. All he says here is that Chopin is without peer, unique, not "the best".
Peerless means the best.

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Originally Posted by pianoloverus
Originally Posted by ranjit
Originally Posted by Carey
Originally Posted by Sweelinck
We all have aesthetic preferences that lead to different rankings of composers, but I don't think history has been unfair to Liszt. Chopin is widely considered the greater composer of the two.
Even Liszt himself admitted that.

In a letter written twenty-seven years after Chopin’s death to Carolyne Sayn-Wittgenstein Liszt commented, “no one compares to him: he shines lonely, peerless in the firmament of art.” smile
I disagree. Liszt is known to have been very generous towards other composers, even premiering their works and not withholding praise in general. All he says here is that Chopin is without peer, unique, not "the best".
Peerless means the best.
No, it doesn't.

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