Our Museum celebrated a special event on 10 March 2018: for the first time we exhibited the manuscripts of Liszt previously tought lost in the Chamber Hall of the Old Academy of Music for the audience and the representatives of the press. The Liszt Ferenc Academy of Music purchased the manuscripts thanks to the financial support of the Ministry of Human Capacities. The works were originally published by Táborszky and Parsch Company and when Kálmán Nádor purchased the Táborszky music shop in 1895, the manuscripts were part of the collection. The seven different Liszt manuscripts are closely related to Hungary, their historical significance and impact on Hungarian music is invaluable.
Our event in honor of Sándor Petőfi and the Hungarian Revolution and Independence War in 1848/49 has a special historical significance in the Hungarian music culture as these hungaricums were exhibited for the first time. The ceremony began with the opening speech of the President of the Liszt Ferenc Academy of Music who emphasized that the documents preserve the handwriting of the founder and first president of our institution and thus represents an enormous value. The second speech was given by the Deputy State Secretary responsible for cultural relations and developments of the Ministry of Human Capacities. She welcomed the purchase of these valuable documents and expressed content that they have become part of a public collection due to the non-repayable grant offered by the National Cultural Fund. The last speaker was Zsuzsanna Domokos, the director of our museum and research centre who gave a short summary of the historical background and Hungarian relevance of the manuscripts for the audience.
The handwritten version for song and orgue of the composition A Magyarok Istene (God of Hungarians) is a rarity because Liszt wrote the poem by Petőfi into the score in Hungarian for the first time in his life. The next manuscript presented was Mosonyi’s Grabgeleit (Funeral procession) composed by Liszt for piano to commemorate one of his best Hungarian friends who died unexpectedly. The third and fourth manuscripts exhibited were the compositions written for piano with the title Petőfi szellemének (In Petőfi’s memory) and the Magyar Királydal (Hungarian King’s Song) composed originally for the opening ceremony of the Hungarian Royal Opera House. The fifth in the row was the choral work A gyermek himnusza ébredéskor (Hymn of the Awakening Child) with the corrections made by Liszt and in the last case Elfelejtett Románc (The forgotten romance) and the Puszta keserve (Longing for the Puszta), compositions that are not directly related to Hungary but are nonetheless very valuable from the perspective of the worldwide Liszt research.
In the second part of the event the audience could listen to a concert given in the honor of the Hungarian Revolution and Independence War in 1848/49. The program contained works related to Hungary written by Liszt and other composers like Ödön Mihalovich, Ferenc Erkel, Jenő Hubay and Máté Hollós and were performed by teachers and guest artists of the Music Academy. The following performers participated in the concert: Emese Virág, Andrea Meláth, Ingrid Kertesi, Szilvia Vörös, László Kiss Gy., Károly Mécs and Jenő Jandó.
The media was highly represented in the Chamber Hall of the Old Music Academy, a lot of Hungarian and international journalists and photographers covered the event. This prestigious commemoration was followed by a conference organised about the Liszt manuscripts for experts and the public on 14 March in the same building with the presentations by the musicologists of the Liszt Ferenc Memorial Museum and Research Center.