The point of departure for the exhibition at Haydn House Eisenstadt is the fact that both Liszt and Haydn were epoch-making court composers. The exhibition will focus on Liszt’s years at Weimar, which are generally seen as his most important creative period.
From 1848 to 1861, Franz Liszt served as Kapellmeister Extraordinaire at the Weimar court. Almost a century earlier, Joseph Haydn had been Kapellmeister at the court of Prince Esterházy.
A painting shows Liszt at the conductor’s stand, dressed in tails and conducting with the same self-confidence that characterised his earlier performances as a concert pianist. His intensity is expressed in every line of his body.
With Liszt, Weimar experienced a musical heyday. In his “Symphonic Poems”, Liszt gave musical expression to the great Romantic writers of Weimar, such as Goethe and Schiller. Numerous centenary celebrations, such as the 100th anniversary of Goethe’s birth, provided occasions for new compositions and world premieres. At the unveiling of the monument of Goethe and Schiller, Beethoven’s 9th Symphony was performed, a work which Liszt had venerated since childhood. This occasion is represented in the exhibition by a first print of the work and illustrations.
At the same time, the villa Altenburg, where he resided with Princess Carolyne Sayn-Wittgenstein, became a centre of the arts which manifested an alternative lifestyle to that of the Weimar court. The exhibition includes a lithograph showing the princess and her seven-year-old daughter Marie.
A-7000 Eisenstadt, Burgenland
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