The birth house and the Esterhazy’s hunting lodge
His late works are strange, they explore new modes – in form as well as in tonality – and already prefigure the music of the 20th century, violent, percussive, or ethereal and repetitive.
The recording was made on the Bösendorfer Vienna Concert no.100 – an instrument I am particularly fond of and which I have already played for the recording of Athanor – in a concert hall built in the garden of Franz Liszt’s birthplace in Raiding, Austria. As the recording took place during the strict lockdown in Austria, both me and the sound engineer were staying in a castle belonging to the Esterhazy family. We were the only souls of the place, and the mists that stretched outside gave us the illusion that we were physically evolving in the limbo of this mysterious music. We wouldn’t have been surprised to see Liszt himself appear in an alleyway in the park in its winter slumber.
The flight connection between Vienna and Geneva being restricted to a few flights a week because of the pandemic, I returned to Switzerland by train. The 14-hour journey made me feel what travel in the 19th century could be like, and enabled me to return to the 21st century smoothly.