Rick Mabry <[log in to unmask]> writes:
>And also, aren't humans too complicated to have a one-to-one function
>from their personas to their musical output?
Wise words. It's a Romantic-Hollywood-Technicolor idea of human life
and personality which tempts us to categorize Liszt (or his music) as
merely vain or self-centred. We would doubtless like life to be that
simple, but it isn't.
Liszt was a chameleon of a man - as a fascinating recent visit to his
house and museum in Budapest revealed to me, who had known very little
about his life history beforehand. In particular, some of those infamous
personal "vanities" could be read as poses, used to deflect silly people
from chasing him around all the time. That is, he was sending himself up
to disguise vulnerabilities which he didn't want to reveal to all and
If anyone can point to a single bar of his music and prove it exhibits
the quality of "vanity" I'll eat my personal wardrobe of hats. Music
doesn't have consciousness, so cannot be vain; and it's as dangerous to
assume that a composer can be identified 100% with every mood in his
work, as it would be to say that Shakespeare *was* Macbeth!
Christopher Webber, Blackheath, London, UK
"ZARZUELA!" The Spanish Music Site