What first attracted you to Liszt’s music, and how did his appeal develop over time?

The first piece I heard and the first piece I learned by Liszt was the famous LiebestraumNo 3, which my grandfather introduced me to. It is one of his finest melodies, and as a young child appealed to me greatly for that reason. At that age I discovered also some of his Hungarian Rhapsodies(initially through Tom and Jerry!) some of the transcriptions, and some of Années de Pèlerinage, but at that time I was not as receptive to some of the longer and more ‘serious’ works like the Ballade No 2, of which I remember having the Horowitz recording.

Benjamin Grosvenor Pianist Benjamin Grosvenor. Photo © Andrej Grilc

It was when in my early teens that I began to really appreciate this side to Liszt – the dark-hued drama and melancholy – and this led me to discover works like the Sonata as well. That is what is so appealing about Liszt, that there are so many facets to him ­– the demonic virtuoso,...

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