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LISZT: Symphonic Poems, Vol. 4

Composer(s):Liszt, Franz
Artist(s) Halasz, Michael, Conductor • New Zealand Symphony Orchestra
Period(s) Romantic
Genre Classical Music
Category Orchestral
Catalogue 8.557847
Label Naxos
Quality   320kbps
Download and Stream

In his 13 symphonic poems, inspired by the visual or literary arts, Liszt broke away from the standard four-movement-symphony, to create a one-movement composition of frequently contrasting moods unified through thematic transformations of a single, recurring musical idea. This recording includes Hungaria, a patriotic reflection on the Hungarian uprising of 1848, and the sombre Héroïde funèbre, described by Liszt as casting a ‘transfiguring veil over the tomb of the brave … in the wars and slaughter that follow one another.’ Le Triomphe funèbre du Tasse was intended as an epilogue to Liszt’s earlier symphonic poem on the tragic fate of the sixteenth-century Italian poet Torquato Tasso. Volumes 1-3 of the


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Review By Penguin Guide,January 2009

Michael Halász here offers three rarities, each with a valedictory theme. Hungaria, dating from 1856, was inspired by the Hungarian uprising of 1848, with a funeral march at its heart. Héroïde funèbre of 1848 was similarly inspired by the revolution in France, also in 1848, and again with funeral music, this time set against beautiful lyrical ideas and passing quotation from the Marseillaise. Le triomphe funèbre, shorter than the other two, is tauter, with greater use of chromatic ideas, but including a patriotic march before the final, somber funeral march. Halász draws committed performances from his orchestra, very well recorded.

Review By David Denton, Naxos,January 2007

They have saved the best to the last, this final instalment of Halasz's cycle of the thirteen Liszt symphonic poems finding both the orchestra and conductor in inspired form. Composed through much of his mature career, they were all in the shape of graphic musical pictures, and as was his wont he painted them in a vast range of orchestral colours. Here Halasz can enjoy the wide dynamic range that the New Zealand Symphony has on offer, from the melancholy that opens Hungaria to the heroic gestures of defiance in the Heroide funebre. Tempos are unhurried, a fact that is to the music's benefit, those moments of silence only adding to the atmosphere Liszt was seeking. Yet the quality of an orchestra can usually be measured in their



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