Franz Liszt was the greatest piano virtuoso of his time, and his enormous solo piano output includes some of the most taxing music for the instrument ever written. He was influenced by a vast range of composers, but none more so than Paganini. Liszt was inspired by Paganini’s incredible virtuosity on the violin, and wanted to translate it into piano technique. He continually sought to push the boundaries of possibility, and many of his most difficult works for solo piano stem from this impulse, including the dazzling and fearsomely difficult Transcendental Studies. In doing so he laid the foundations for modern piano technique. However, the Studies are also one of the most important cycles in his output, designed to be a collection of sublimely enjoyable sound pictures and not just a series of technical inventions. Each one presents a different challenge to the performer, requiring eloquence and lyricism as much as dazzling virtuosity, from the delicacy of Feux follets, to the melting poetry of Ricordanza, the grand and dramatic Eroica, to the thundering finale, Chasse-neige.
This is the revised and most-performed version of the original 12 Transcendental Studies, published in 1852, which is slightly easier to play, although the galloping Mazeppa is technically more difficult.
The exciting young Italian pianist Mariangela Vacatello is a Liszt specialist, renowned for her passionate performances and technical ability. She has given concerts at prestigious venues across the USA and Europe,and has won many awards. These include 2nd prize at the Franz Liszt International Piano Competition in 1999, and the Internet Audience Award at the 2009 Van Cliburn International Piano Competition.
About Mariangela Vacatello:
• Mariangela Vacatello is an internationally acclaimed concert pianist, recognized worldwide for her passion, technical ability and magnificent musicality.
• She is the winner of numerous prestigious international prizes and awards such as:
- winner of the Top of the World International Piano Competition 2009.
- winner of the Laureate Prize at the Queen Elisabeth International Music Competition in 2007.
- Second Prize at the Ferruccio Busoni International Piano Competition in 2005.
• She has appeared as a soloist in the most prestigious venues and festivals worldwide, including the Berlin Konzerthaus, Wigmore Hall in London, Salle Cortot in Paris, Mozarteum Auditorium in Salzburg, Weill Hall at Carnegie Hall in New York, Walt Disney Hall in Los Angeles, a.o.
• “Both technically and musically, but Mariangela Vacatello rose superbly to the occasion. ... most commandingly played, the work’s myriad sensibilities drawing playing of no little refinement from this gifted artist. - Robert Matthew-Walker Wigmore Hall