September 16 – September 18, 2015

The Registration for the 2015 American Liszt Society Festival is CLOSED —

Jay A. Hershberger – President, American Liszt Society
Joseph Banowetz – Festival Artistic Director
Pamela Mia Paul – Festival Committee Chair
Anne Oncken – Festival Managing Director

It is a great privilege and pleasure to invite you to the 2015 American Liszt Society Festival. The theme of the festival is "Liszt and Damnation." Because of Liszt's strong Catholic faith, listeners associate many important Liszt works with religious themes, but there was a very dark, often sinister aspect to a significant body of his works. The 2015 festival will explore this fascinating, yet not so well known, character of his music.

The festival will include two special evening concerts. The first evening concert is presented by the UNT Symphony Orchestra, the program consisting of the Liszt Totentanz, as constructed by Ferruccio Busoni from an earlier version by Liszt, followed by Act I of Wagner's Die Walküre in its entirety.

The second evening concert will be a tribute to the late Thomas Mastroianni, who for many years was president of the American Liszt Society. His tragic and unexpected death this past fall deeply saddened all the members of the society. Dr. Mastroianni was a devout Catholic, and the concert will feature religious compositions by Liszt. This special memorial concert will be presented by a number of Dr. Mastroianni’s close colleagues and friends.

Younger Lisztians will present performances at the festival as well, including a recital featuring laureates of the Los Angeles International Liszt Competition, and an organ program with Liszt’s Fantasy and Fugue, S.459 and Reubke’s Sonata on the 94th Psalm preceding the Festival Farewell Banquet on Friday evening.

The numerous concerts and lectures during the festival will feature such works and topics as Liszt's De Profundis; the four Mephisto Waltzes; songs by both Liszt and Busoni; elements of damnation in Liszt's Ballade No. 2; Vianna da Motta's Ballada, Op. 16; Busoni's transcription of the first Mephisto Waltz; and transcriptions of Wagner by Liszt's pupil, August Stradal. These are but a few of the programs that will feature Liszt's dark and death obsessed side, which in his later years became especially prominent.

This year’s gathering will be very special, and we welcome all lovers of Liszt's incredible music.

Joseph Banowetz
2015 Festival Artistic Director

Click here to download the festival flyer
(The schedule on the flyer may be out of date. Please consult the Schedule Page for recent changes)