DIARY/BLOG, PUBLICATIONS AND RELEASES 2015-2016 SEASON

18 July – 5 August
Necessary research on behalf of my book The Mazeppa Music of Franz Liszt did me decide to pack my bags and go for a three week tour to Paris, Weimar and Vienna. I also hoped to visit a few other places and to meet some friends. At home I wrote a travel report on this tour ‘In the footsteps of Franz Liszt’, illustrated with pictures that I made on the way. This report is unabridged published under the tab DIVERSEN (on the Dutch site only).

Sunday afternoon 12 June 2016
Birthday Concert at Westvest Church, Westvest 90, 3111 BZ Schiedam, 14.30 hours; admission free.
At this location, one of the most popular recording locations in the Netherlands, with a wonderful grand piano and excellent acoustics, I hope to present my seventh CD En première (AB I-07) containing as yet unrecorded repertoire of J.S. Bach, C.P.E. Bach, Czerny, Liszt, the Dutch impressionist Bernhard van den Sigtenhorst Meyer, Debussy and Messiaen. After the intermission friends will play one of my compositions and the young talented pianist Nikola Meeuwsen will perform Carl Czerny’s arrangement for piano solo of Chopin’s Introduction et Polonaise brillante, Opus 3, preceded by the original version for cello and piano (with the no less gifted Alexander Warenberg on the cello and Nikola at the grand). If everything goes according to plan, on that very day also my edition of that virtually unknown arrangement, in the past regarded as a transcription by Chopin himself, will be released (AB II-22).
The concert will be concluded by Yvo Verschoor, who will improvise on fragments of silent films about piano playing and pianists, this being followed by a homespun reception.

AB-28

6 June 2016
In conversation with Remon Holsbergen in connection with an interview to be published in Piano Bulletin 2016/2.

Publication June 2016
In MUZE (PianoWereld) 2016-3 appeared:
De ‘Première Polonaise’ van Frédéric Chopin in soloversie – Een ontdekkingsreis in vier etappes (‘The Première Polonaise by Frédéric Chopin – A Journey of Discovery in four stages’). An amply illustrated report of the discovery of the solo version of Chopin’s Introduction et Polonaise brillante for cello and piano (Opus 3), the edition of which will be released on 12 June during my birthday concert. For the greater part the text has been borrowed from the Introduction to my edition (AB II-22).

Publications February 2016
In Liszt Bulletin 2016 – 1, the newsletter of the Franz Liszt Kring, appeared:
– Erinnerungen an Franz Liszt by August Stradal in republication (book review)
– Els Bieseman performs song transcriptions by Franz Liszt (CD review)
– In the column ‘Did you know that …’ this time a free adaptation of the account of a masterclass in the Hofgärtnerei in August 1882, when the Maestro was in a bad mood and – contrary to his usual behaviour – blew up at the gifted Russian pianist Katharina Ranouchewitch.

Publications December 2015
– In Studia musicologica (Volume 55, Issue 1/2) appeared: Franz Liszt’s Mazeppa Sketch in His Sketchbook N6, an article based on the lecture which I gave during the International Liszt Symposium in November 2011 in Budapest. At the charge of €15,- this study (pp. 27-42) can be downloaded on the website of Akadémiai Kiadó, the Hungarian university publishing house. The language is English.
– In the Journal of the Franz Liszt Circle were published two related studies: Franz Liszt en Ignaz Moscheles – ‘ een goed tweespan, door Apollo zonder zweep geleid’ (Franz Liszt and Ignaz Moscheles – ‘a good span, driven by Apollo without whip’) and De briefwisseling Liszt – Moscheles (‘The correspondence Liszt – Moscheles’). The first article describes the nearly forty years of their relationship, from Liszt’s performance of the Marche d’Alexandre by Moscheles on 13 April 1823 in Vienna, a work that the young pianist has played several times, till and with their meetings during the ‘Tonkünstler-Fest’ in June 1859. Special attention is paid to the correspondence in connection with the English edition of Liszt’s Grandes études, for which Moscheles acted as mediator in London. The letters concerned are published here for the first time complete, both in the original language (French) and in translation. The language is Dutch.

Sunday 29 November 2015
Mazeppa in the Romantic Arts (lecture)
Illustrated by a great number of pictures (PowerPoint presentation) I will tell something about the adventurous life of Cossack hetman Ivan Mazeppa, in particular how in the 19th century the story of the wild ride on horseback inspired many artists to create works of art, ranging from adventure stories to serious dramas, from huge oil paintings to small drawings, from hippodramas in arenas to evening-filling operas, and from cheap salon pieces for piano to symphonic masterpieces for full orchestra.
Location: Honig Breethuis (an historical merchant house), Lagedijk 80, Zaandijk.
At 16.00 hours; entry: € 17.50, introducees: € 15.00; children from 4-12 years of age: € 7.50.

Poster Mazeppa

Saturday 21 November 2015
The impressionistic piano music of Bernhard van den Sigtenhorst Meijer, a lecture-recital during the National Annual Conference of EPTA – The Netherlands.
The early piano works of the The Hague composer Bernhard van den Sigtenhorst Meijer represent a rare example of Dutch impressionistic piano music. From 1915 until 1923 he wrote around forty piano pieces, assembled in cycles of three to eight parts, which hardly are performed anymore and are difficult to obtain. Reason enough to pay attention to this unjustly forgotten music, to revive it, and to tell something about the backgrounds of these wonderful compositions by means of a PowerPoint presentation.
Location: De Observant, Stadhuisplein 7, Amersfoort; at 15.30 hours.   

Sunday 15 November 2015
The impressionistic piano music of Bernhard van den Sigtenhorst Meijer (lecture-recital; see above).
Location: De Maranatha-kerk, Tweede Sweelinckstraat 156, Den Haag.
At 17.00 hours.

Publications September 2015
In Piano Bulletin of EPTA  NETHERLANDS (2015-2) there appeared:
– An interview with the French master pianist Eric Heidsieck (together with Jan Marisse Huizing).
Eric Heidsieck, a student of Alfred Cortot and Wilhelm Kempff, I have known from 2003 onwards, when we were both on the jury of Les Rencontres Internationales des jeunes pianistes in Namen (Namur). We liked each other, and some visits to his house at rue Papillon in Paris followed. During these encounters I became impressed by his personal, very musical, ‘speaking’ way of piano playing, as recorded on more than a hundred CD’s with works ranging from Bach and Händel to personal compositions. During meetings of the board of editors of the Piano Bulletin I insisted on having an interview with this old master, now 78 years of age. On Monday 8 June 2015 the hour had come! On that day my collegue and friend Jan Marisse Huizing and I travelled on the Thalys to Paris and were for two-and-a-half hours the guests of the amiable, still active maestro. The photo below shows him at his Erard, a special instrument, on which in the past the famous pianist Francis Planté practised regularly.

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Tilly Fleischmann – Tradition and Craft in Piano Playing (book review).
Tilly Fleishmann studied at the ‘Königliche Akademie der Tonkunst’ [Royal Academy of Music] in München with Bernhard Stavenhagen and Berthold Kellermann, two well-known Liszt students. Returning to her native country, Ireland, she led a busy life as pianist and, especially, as piano teacher. The results of her sixty-year-long pedagogical activities are disclosed in this piano method, which has only recently been published in its totality. The voluminous book in A4-format, with 285 music  examples which also are to be heard on an included CD, gives a clear insight into the piano technical training and interpretative tradition as she herself had received them from her teachers and, therefore, in a direct line go back to those of Franz Liszt.