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  • Liszt: 10 Hungarian Rhapsodies
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Liszt: 10 Hungarian Rhapsodies Original recording remastered


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Audio CD, Original recording remastered, April 10, 2001
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Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

Samples
Song Title Time Price
listen  1. 19 Hungarian Rhapsodies S244 (2001 Digital Remaster): No. 2 in C sharp minor 9:15$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  2. 19 Hungarian Rhapsodies S244 (2001 Digital Remaster): No. 6 in D flat major 6:32$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  3. 19 Hungarian Rhapsodies S244 (2001 Digital Remaster): No. 8 in F sharp minor (Capriccio) 5:51$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  4. 19 Hungarian Rhapsodies S244 (2001 Digital Remaster): No. 9 in E flat major (Carnival in Pest)10:08$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  5. 19 Hungarian Rhapsodies S244 (2001 Digital Remaster): No. 10 in E major (Preludio) 4:58$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  6. 19 Hungarian Rhapsodies S244 (2001 Digital Remaster): No. 11 in A minor 5:10$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  7. 19 Hungarian Rhapsodies S244 (2001 Digital Remaster): No. 12 in C sharp minor 8:54$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  8. 19 Hungarian Rhapsodies S244 (2001 Digital Remaster): No. 13 in A minor 8:30$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  9. 19 Hungarian Rhapsodies S244 (2001 Digital Remaster): No. 14 in F minor10:56Album Only
listen10. 19 Hungarian Rhapsodies S244 (2001 Digital Remaster): No. 15 in A minor (Rákóczy) 5:34$0.99  Buy MP3 

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Product Details

  • Performer: Georges Cziffra
  • Composer: Franz Liszt
  • Audio CD (April 10, 2001)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Original recording remastered
  • Label: EMI Classics
  • ASIN: B00005AVML
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #229,998 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Like going to the rollercoaster!
nanoc
There is a certain style and technique that every composer demands of his performers.
piano major
It sounds to me like a digital recording.
Jian Zhuang

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

70 of 72 people found the following review helpful By piano major on January 1, 2003
Format: Audio CD
First of all, buy this CD, for there is nothing like it in the world.
There is a certain style and technique that every composer demands of his performers. No performer is universally perfect, but some come closer to achieving the particular style of a given composer that other performers. Artur Schnabel, despite his clumsy fingerwork, gives us the definitive Beethoven interpretations with his broad-sighted view of the structure of the sonatas, combined with great rhythmic vitality and dynamic contrasts. Glenn Gould, despite his near-total oblivion to Baroque performance practice, gives us the most contrapuntally lucid, rhythmically and dynamically even, and inspiring readings of the Bach keyboard works ever recorded. And Gyorgy Cziffra, despite his outrageous fluctuations in tempo and alterations of the score, provides the most thrilling and technically dazzling plowing through of these 10 hungarian rhapsodies. Cziffra plays the hungarian rhapsodies extravertedly, with wit, finesse, THE greatest technique I have ever heard, occasionally with a tempo, and usually with what Liszt wrote. The last two comments are where contraversy arises. Cziffra added passages and notes into some of the rhapsodies that slightly change the flavor of the music, but it always sounds like Liszt. He also omits the fast scale near the end of number 15 (I don't know why; throughout he plays much harder scales brilliantly), but the performance does not suffer at all from his odd decisions. Also, Cziffra was trained in the 20s and 30s, when alterations of the score were very commonplace (the university had not yet become the primary patron of the music at that point; therefore the intellectual piety towards the composers' marks had not yet developped).
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66 of 68 people found the following review helpful By Joanna Daneman #1 HALL OF FAMETOP 10 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on January 17, 2003
Format: Audio CD
This was one of my favorite recordings as a child--it was made in the Sixties, and is digitally remastered here on CD. I must have listened to that old vinyl recording until the grooves were transparent. It is so wonderful to have it on CD so I can enjoy it once more.
I am not actually a huge fan of Liszt--but my Mom was and is. Her favorite piece that she played on our piano was Hungarian Rhapsody #6, and our whole family loved to listen to this recording for its insane tempi, the rhythmic variations and pure fire in the expression. Would that we could ever play a tenth as well as Cziffra.
Cziffra, who was a Hungarian Gypsy (Rom, more properly) had a career that read like an adventure novel. He was imprisoned during the war, made to carry bricks and mortar hods with those precious hands. He ended up in Paris, playing in jazz clubs (now that would have been something to hear!) His life was never easy, though he did enjoy, finally, monstrous popularity both in France and internationally.
This recording is perhaps the most characteristic of his playing, as the Rhapsodies are a fine canvas for exuberant expression and frank liberties not only with tempo and rhythm but even with the score itself. This is a recording that makes my heart palpitate every time I play it. It is over the top--but then, so was Liszt himself. Absolutely breathtaking.
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42 of 43 people found the following review helpful By Jian Zhuang on December 25, 2001
Format: Audio CD
Hungarian Rhapsodies #2, #6, and #8~#15 total of 10 are included. Cziffra was one of the great pianists of the 20th Century and a unique super virtuoso player. Few pianists can match this kind of speed and energy, may be only Horowitz at his prime. Gramophone comment: "Cziffra, with his superb technique, Hungarian birthright and virtuoso flair, is the ideal exponent of this music."
These pieces were recorded in the early 70's and recently remastered by EMI Classics using Abbey Road Technology. It sounds to me like a digital recording. Excellent.
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful By an amazon fan on January 10, 2006
Format: Audio CD
I've heard many Hungarian Rhapsodies and basically bought this CD

to see if he could outdo Horowitz's performance of the #2 Rhapsody. But after buying it, I realized Horowitz dressed up the original score to create the ultimate Hungarian Rhapsody #2, namely his own. He engineered a truely mind-boggling Showpiece. But to my knowledge, he didn't create a more complex variation with any other of Liszt's works. However, I now truly believe and feel (literally) after hearing Cziffra, that he wins first prize in regard to absolute mastery on all levels for these 10 Rhapsodies choosen to be recorded. And why not? He's playing from his soul literally, being that his parents were both Hungarian gypsies. In the excellent linear notes is written the following - "More succinctly, for Marcel Dupre, Cziffra was 'la reincarnation de Liszt'". I don't doubt that for a moment.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By James Yowell Yelvington VINE VOICE on August 15, 2008
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Most all the previous reviewers have got it right about this CD, which is remastered from stereo analog tapes recorded in Paris in the years 1972-75. Cziffra seems at the top of his form and in his most natural milieu as he tackles these gypsy-influenced Hungarian virtuoso piano works, seemingly without difficulty but with plenty of instinctive passion and sparkling bravura. Knowledge of the early hardships of this son of impoverished and oppressed Roma parents make us root for his success, but such feelings must yield to objective evidence in evaluating his performances. Happily, the evidence is almost totally in his favor as we observe the precision, balance, and interpretive authority which accompany the brilliant extravagance of his playing.

This student of a student of Liszt (István Thomán) and of the celebrated pianist-composer-conductor Ernö Dohnányi is well schooled in the art of virtuoso pianism, despite his lack of early training. It must be due to prodigious natural gifts that he was able to overcome original deficiencies eventually to win the attention of such renowned mentors. In any case, he emerged from behind the iron curtain in 1956 to astound the world with his masterful performances, such as those included here.

Despite the claims of a few, there is no empty banging here, nor sloppiness nor emotional excess. The Rhapsodies are Hungarian/Roma-inspired pieces raised to a level of artistry through the compositional efforts and talents of Franz Liszt. György Cziffra comes to them with the best of credentials, and the results speak for themselves most eloquently!
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