Transcendental Etudes S. 139
Franz Liszt

Transcendental Etudes S. 139

Kirill Gerstein

Label: Myrios Classics
Format: SACD
Barcode: 4260183510192
Catalog number: MYR 019
Releasedate: 27-10-23
Liszt‘s Transcendental Etudes are a quintessential distillation of the mid-19th century romantic project: they’re like sounding images of romanticism’s nervous system, its otherworldly experiences, and its transcendence. Most of the études, in title and content, go beyond the normal reality and depict the ghostly, visionary and the impressionistic. The musical impressionism, the depictions of the worlds beyond everyday life and the physical challenges make the cycle into one of the towering mountain peaks of piano literature. Inspired by Ferrucio Busoni’s aphorism, “Bach is the alpha and Liszt is the omega of piano playing”, last year Gerstein presented Liszt’s cycle at both Carnegie Hall and the Wigmore Hall. In London, The Observer commented: “The young Russian-American pianist tackled this staggeringly virtuosic work from memory. His technique and intellectual grasp are phenomenal”, while the New York Times observed: “[Gerstein] ended with a dazzling performance of Liszt’s 12 Transcendental Etudes, some of the most difficult music ever written for the piano... The audience seemed stunned, deliriously so...”