Albert Brussee



Franz Liszt, the most famous pianist of the 19th century, living and working in different countries of Europe, travelled that continent like few others. He is rightly called ‘the first European’. In recent decades I have visited many places where my idol stayed for a longer or shorter period of time and have written about them in various publications. I also traced the journey that Franz Liszt and Marie d’Agoult made through Switzerland in the summer of 1835, based on notes in Liszt’s Agenda 1835 and Marie d’Agoult’s Mémoires. As both Liszt’s Agenda and Marie d’Agoult’s diary excerpt Le voyage en Suisse have only recently been published, there is virtually nothing to be found in the Liszt literature about this adventurous hike of the then 23-year-old pianist and his mistress. This travelogue therefore fills a gap in the biography of both the famous pianist-composer and the gifted writer on the one hand, but on the other hand tells of my own experiences and discoveries. This booklet, which is published under the auspices of the Dutch Franz Liszt Kring [Franz Liszt Circle], thus falls somewhere between a musicological study and a ‘holiday diary’; there is a continuous switch between past and present. This also applies to the illustrations: in addition to a large number of holiday photos, various historical images have been included that give an impression of the situation as encountered by Franz Liszt and Marie d’Agoult. As in a documentary, everything is revealed; the reader is, as it were, invited to follow in the lovers’ footsteps and take a look at everything for himself.

The language is Dutch, but at the back of the book there is a generous English summary (calendar).


“In 95 pages Albert Brussee takes the reader along on Liszt’s and his own journey through the beautiful Alpine countryside. He describes in graphic detail what can still be found today of the hotels where the pianist and his beloved stayed, the establishments where they dined, and the tourist and cultural attractions they visited. Brussee made discoveries on the spot, which are additions to what is known about this Swiss holiday trip from Marie’s memoirs and Liszt’s diary, making the book, despite its informal character, worthy of a place in the ‘serious’ Liszt literature. (…) A final section printed on chamois paper contains an English calendar with a summary of Liszt’s journey, to make the book accessible to international Liszt research.
Brussee is not only a gifted researcher and an enthralling narrator, but also an excellent photographer. Besides historical images he placed many beautiful, self-made photos of all the locations visited, which in a beautiful way form an essential and attractive element of the book. Joop Berkhout provided maps of the various travel routes. Brussee himself took care of the attractive layout.”
Christo Lelie in Piano Bulletin 2021/2

“For all Liszt-adepts, the detailed account of the journey of Franz Liszt and Marie d’Agoult by Albert Brussee is a gift. You cannot get any closer to the life of the young Liszt and the genesis of his music. Moreover, the book gives a wonderful picture of travel in the early 19th century and the hunger for tourist experiences.”
Katja Reichenfeld in De Nieuwe Muze 2022 – 1.

“This delightful book traces Franz Liszt and his mistress Marie d’Agoult on their escapade in the summer of 1835 through Switzerland. In fact, the author traced the same journey of about four weeks in the summer of 2013. Albert Brussee is well known as an expert on Liszt having, amongst other projects, reconstructed and edited the early version of the Harmonies poétiques et religieuses. (….) It is an interesting read which, with the many beautiful pictures, both historic and recent, make you feel you’re on the journey yourself. Indeed, the book is filled with observations about the local sights, and how they would have appeared in the 1830s. It’s also intriguing to see a different side of Liszt – someone riding horses and climbing mountains. The book is an excellent addition to Liszt scholarship and it is to be hoped that it will appear in English soon.”
Titus Hilberdink in The Liszt Society Newsletter (No. 145)


© 2021 AB Music Productions & Editions, The Hague.
Printed with BRAVE NEW BOOKS, Amsterdam (print-on-demand edition).
Paperback; 108 pages; with 93 full colour images.
ISBN: 978-94-643504-3-2


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This richly illustrated booklet (full colour) describes the journey that Franz Liszt and Marie d’Agoult made through Switzerland in the summer of 1835. The author traced this journey on the basis of Liszt’s Agenda 1835 and the recently published diary excerpt Le voyage en Suisse by Marie d’Agoult, following in the lovers’ footsteps. The result is somewhere between a musicological study and a ‘holiday diary’. With a generous English summary.