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Welcome

The Society offers:

  • Journal of the American Liszt Society (JALS), published annually
  • The American Liszt Society Newsletter, published biannually
  • Annual ALS Festivals
  • ALS Archives at the Library of Congress
  • Local Chapters in various geographical areas
  • Publication opportunities in JALS
  • Performance opportunities in festivals and in chapter activities
  • Paper presentation opportunities at festivals
  • Host "house concerts"
  • Networking and mutual support among performers, scholars, and music lovers dedicated to the ideas and ideals of Franz Liszt

Paul Barnes Performs in Recital at University of Nebraska

Celebrating both his twenty-fifth year at the Glenn Korff School of Music and his return to playing for a live audience, pianist and chanter Paul Barnes returned to the Lied Center for Performing Arts on Thursday, September 24, to present a contemplative and cathartic program of piano works inspired by the mystical world of Native American, Greek, Jewish, and Latin chant. Barnes, a concert pianist and Greek Orthodox chanter, has collaborated most recently with Philip Glass and Victoria Bond to create piano works based on ancient byzantine and Jewish chant. Barnes has also been a passionate champion of the works of Liszt and performs Liszt's late masterpiece, Via Crucis, the Way of the Cross. Barnes was joined by Nicholas Lemme and the Our Lady of Guadalupe Schola, who performed traditional Gregorian chant and assisted Barnes with the Greek Orthodox chant. World premieres on this program include Barnes' transcription of Philip Glass's Annunciation and David von Kampen's new piano work, Trisagion (2020). The overall theme of "bright sadness" permeates the program as the tremendous depth and intensity of ancient chant is seen through the bright prism of hope and love.

You can watch the performace on YouTube.

In Memoriam: Nancy Bachus

I am sorry to relay the sad news of the death of Nancy Bachus, long-time board member of the ALS and former student of the late ALS president, Fernando Laires. Nancy was a marvelous teacher and a well-known published pedagogue. Her enthusiastic and active support of the ALS as a board member was outstanding, and she was a wonderful professional colleague. We shall miss her and think of her with fond remembrance. We send our heartfelt condolences to her family and friends.

Jay Hershberger, President, The American Liszt Society

The 2020 Festival at the University of Michigan
has been postponed!


Matthew Bengston, host of the 2020 ALS festival at the Univesity of Michigan, after consultation with UMich administration and with the concurrence of the ALS Board of Directors, has postponed the 2020 festival until 2021. The change in plans is the result of the coronavirus and the uncertainty concerning government and university regulations for next fall. The new dates for the festival will be May 12 - 15, 2021. A new schedule of events will be very similar to that released earlier for 2020:

"Liszt and Hungary"

    The festival opens with authentic Gypsy music, performed by the
        Romani ensemble "Gypsy Stringz," with violinist George Batyi
    Music of Hungarian composers inspired by Liszt
    Performances of Liszt's 19 Hungarian Rhapsodies
    The influence of the Gypsy people and their music
    Chamber music by Kocsár, Bartók, and Brahms
    Lectures by leading English-speaking music scholars
    Performances of music for piano - four hands, fortepiano, and harpsichord
    Music by lesser-known 19th century composers Székely, Aggházy,
         Végh, and Mihalovich
    Solo piano Hungarian-themed works by Liszt, Brahms, Schubert, Dohnányi,
         Kodály, and Bartók

Maurice Hinson's The Pianist's Dictionary updated and expanded.

Members will be interested to know that Indiana University Press recently published a new edition of the late Maurice Hinson's The Pianist's Dictionary, which has been updated and expanded by ALS member Wesley Roberts. The book is a handy and practical reference dictionary aimed specifically at pianists, teachers, students, and concertgoers. This revised and expanded edition is a compendium of information that users will find helpful with clear definitions of musical and pianistic terms, performance directions, composers, pianists, famous piano pieces, and piano makers. It will be useful for compiling program and liner notes, studying scores, and learning and teaching the piano.

Roberts has a new 3rd edition of The Piano in Chamber Ensemble at press and scheduled for release in early 2021.

Announcing the 2020 Alan Walker Book Award

The fourth Alan Walker Book Award, offered triennially, will be presented for a new book in English, a translation into English, or a substantially revised new edition of a book in English that contributes to Liszt scholarship. Topics include the life and music of Franz Liszt, the life and music of a pupil of Liszt, and other Liszt-related research. The prize for the winning selection is $1500.
Although the deadline for submissions has passed, information may be obtained from:
    Richard Zimdars
    2020 Alan Walker Book Award
    181 Clyde Road
    Athens, GA 30605
    Richard Zimdars


In Memoriam: Sandra Mauchley

The Board of Directors extends its sincere condolences to Dr. Jay Mauchley upon the death of his wife, Sandra ("Sandy"). Sandy and Jay were frequent performers of duo- and two-piano music at many festivals of The American Liszt Society, as well as in concerts at festivals in Montana, Michigan, Idaho, and other states. As ALS President Jay Hershberger has said, "Jay and Sandra were active Lisztians, and they started the Idaho chapter of the ALS. Sandra was lively and quick in her personality, and her youthful spirit and sparkling humor brightened all of us. She was also a very fine teacher, and she and Jay were long-time respected members of the music faculty at the University of Idaho-Moscow, as well as regulars at the Red Lodge Music Festival in Montana. Our hearts go out to Jay and their family." For further information please go to Sandra Mauchley obituary.


Long-time Member Palma Wolverton Dies in Billings, MT.

The Board of Directors extends its sincere condolences to the family of Palma Woverton. A long-time member of The American Liszt Society, Palma died July 3, 2019, in Billings, MT. She attended many festivals of the society. For further details, please see Wolverton obituary


ALAN WALKER TURNS 90!!
Happy Birthday, Dear Alan!!

Dr. Alan Walker, Life Member and Board of Directors Member of The American Liszt Society, turned 90 on Monday, April 6, 2020. Dr. Walker is considered by most authorities to be the world's preeminent scholar on the life and music of Franz Liszt. Anyone who has read his three-volume biography of our namesake realizes immediately that Alan thoroughly knows his subject and provides the reader with a most interesting "can't-put-it-down" writing style. This is true of his other books, including the most recent Fryderyk Chopin: A Life and Times, which The New York Times called "magisterial." His presentations at festivals of The American Liszt Society likewise hold the listener almost in a trance, with facts, dates, and figures woven together in a story rather than a lecture.

On behalf of the entire membership of The American Liszt Society and Liszt aficianados throughout the world, the Board of Directors salutes Dr. Walker on this milestone in his life and wishes him the best of good health and happiness as he begins his tenth decade! Happy Birthday, Dear Alan!!


Ian Hobson Starts a Schumann Series in NYC

Life member Ian Hobson, whose playing has been described by Gramophone as "intensely alive to expressive nuance, textural clarity and elastic shaping," recently performed the first of 15 recitals in a series devoted to Robert Schumann. The concerts, which will feature all of the composer's solo piano and chamber works with piano, take place at New York's downtown venue SubCulture (45 Bleecker Street, New York, NY 10012) over the course of three concert seasons, and began in February 2020 and, as of now, are scheduled through spring 2022.

The first concert on February 19 included:
"Fantasy Pieces"
Fantasiestücke, Op. 111
Fantasiestücke, Op. 12
Fantasia in C, Op. 17

For a review, please go to Hobson NYC concert, February 19, 2020.

New York/New Jersey Chapter Presents Recital on
January 8, 2020

The New York/New Jersey Chapter presented Joseph Kingma and Yi Zhong in a piano recital on Wednesday, January 8, at the Yamaha Piano Salon in New York City. Kingma was the winner of the 2017 Ohio International Liszt Competition, and Yi Zhong was the third prize winner of the Los Angeles International Liszt Competition. Their program included works by Liszt, Berlioz-Liszt, Granados, Ponce, and Rachmaninov.

Chicago/Midwest Chapter Celebrates Franz Liszt's 208th Birthday on October 19!

The American Liszt Society Chicago/Midwest Chapter celebrated Franz Liszt's 208th birthday with a grand evening of piano music on Saturday, October 19th, at Nichols Concert Hall in Evanston, IL. The concert featured world-class Chicago-based pianists performing many of Liszt's solo piano works. Performers included Jennifer Allor, Pawel Checinski, Matthew Hagle, Weiwen Ma, George Radosavljevic and Alex Yuill, as well as a special performance by young rising star, Music Institute of Chicago Academy student pianist, Eriko Darcy. Please subscribe to our ALS Chicago/Midwest Facebook Page to keep up to date with our local events.

Oregon Chapter Offers Liszt Birthday Celebration,
October 19, 20 and 22

The Oregon Chapter of The American Liszt Society offered three days of dedicated to the 208th birthday of Franz Liszt. Every end of October for the past 14 years the Chapter and the University of Oregon School of Music and Dance have offered a variety of programs celebrating the music of Liszt and his contemporaries. This year's topic was "Late Piano Music by Liszt." It was a unique opportunity to experience live performances of fascinating, lesser-known works that took the listener on a journey to a different musical universe. This was definitely not your "usual" Liszt!

This year, the chapter extended the festivities with a "Mini-Festival" including solo performances, a lecture, a masterclass and an orchestral performance with outstanding Hungarian pianist Éva Polgár. For additional information, please visit the University of Oregon School of Music website.

San Francisco Bay Chapter's Daniel Glover
Has a Busy Schedule This Fall

Daniel Glover, Vice President of the San Francisco Bay Chapter, played a recital in Old First Church, with a program of music by modern Polish composers and Chopin's complete Twenty-Four Preludes, Op. 28. On September 14 he appeared as soloist with the Bay Area Rainbow Symphony (BARS) with Amy Beach's rarely heard Concerto, composed in 1899. Dawn Harms conducted the BARS orchestra, which also performed Humperdinck's "Overture" to Hansel and Gretel and Shostakovich's Tenth Symphony. Daniel will be attending Abbey Simon's 100th Birthday Party in Genève, Switzerland.

Chicago Chapter Welcomes Gila Goldstein for Her Recital on September 21, 2019.

The Chicago Chapter welcomed ALS New York/New Jersey chapter president and pianist Gila Goldstein in recital Saturday, September 21, in Ganz Hall of Roosevelt University in Chicago. This world class pianist played Liszt's "Les cloches de Genève"; Six Preludes and Fugues from The Well-Tempered Clavier by Bach; and Schumann's Kreisleriana, Op. 16.


Madeleine Forte Performs in Ensemble Recital
on September 15

Madeleine Forte was the pianist in the Lillibridge Ensemble when it performed two major works by Brahms. She was joined by violinist Rafael Ryger and cellist Karen Ryger in a performance of the Brahms third piano trio in c minor, Op. 101. Madeleine and Rafael also played Brahms's second violin sonata in A Major, Op 100. The program took take place on Sunday, September 15, in the Cultural Arts Center in Hamden, Connecticut.

2019 Festival

Members and friends of The American Liszt Society will find the website of the 2019 ALS Festival at Arizona State University most interesting! Host Baruch Meir put together a splendid schedule of events, including a presentation of The American Liszt Society Medal to Martha Argerich!

West Texas Chapter Activities

The newly established West Texas Chapter of The American Liszt Society, housed at Wayland Baptist University, under the guidance of president Richard Fountain and vice president Kennith Freeman, had an exciting first year of events. ALS Executive Secretary Justin Kolb presented a memorable lecture and recital on August 30, 2018. On November 1, guest pianist William Westney from Texas Tech University presented a program including Liszt's "Liebestraum No. 2" and the 11th Hungarian Rhapsody. In the spring of 2019, chapter president Richard Fountain continued his cycle of Liszt-Beethoven symphonies, performing the Seventh Symphony and Beethoven's Op. 101 sonata on February 7, the Eighth Symphony and Beethoven's Op. 10, No. 2 sonata on March 7, and the Fifth Symphony and Beethoven's Op. 10, No. 1 sonata on April 16. For the final concert, the chapter invited faculty and students from WBU's Fine Arts department to display original artwork responding to Beethoven's Fifth Symphony. The chapter also welcomed guest pianist Clara Christian from College of the Ozarks on February 28 for a masterclass and recital, featuring several movements from Liszt's first Année de Pèlerinage. To close the year, several members of the chapter made a pilgrimage of their own to Liszt's grave in Bayreuth on May 19 as part of a study tour to Central Europe.



The deadline for the next issue of
The American Liszt Society Newsletter
(Summer/Fall 2020, Volume 36, Number 1) is
December 15, 2020. The publication date is ca. January 15, 2021.

The current issue of the Newsletter was mailed August 17. If you did not receive your copy and are a dues-paying member in good standing, please send a request for a hardcopy version of the issue to Alexander Djordjevic, Membership Secretary, The American Liszt Society, PO Box 1020, Wheaton, IL 60187-1020. You may also access the issue by clicking on the link on "Newsletters" in the left-hand column on this page and then click on 29LisztNLVol35No2.pdf.