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March 2011 - Nr. 3

Born October 22, 1811, composer, pianist and conductor Franz Liszt counts as one of the musical greats of the 19th century. He spent years touring Europe, during which he forged special relationships with many German towns and regions. On a number of occasions, for example, Liszt wowed Dresden’s audiences with his virtuoso performances. In 2011, the Dresden State Orchestra of Saxony, the Dresden Philharmonic, the Dresden Music Festival and the Carl Maria von Weber University of Music in Dresden will honour him with a variety of concerts at such venues as the Church of Our Lady and the Semper Opera House ( Liszt also had a great following in Leipzig, Berlin and Hamburg, as well as in Weimar, in Thuringia, where he was ultimately appointed kapellmeister extraordinaire to the Grand Duke. His years in Weimar proved his most prolific. Besides composing, he worked as a conductor and taught many budding pianists.

The influence of Liszt's work spread to other regional towns, above all to Sondershausen, Meiningen and Eisenach. That’s why celebrations for this exceptional musician will take place throughout Thuringia in 2011, one theme focussing on Liszt as the musical heir to Weimar’s literary Classicism.
The star event on Thuringia's events calendar, the "Überlisztet" festival takes place from 21 June to 9 July 2011. Simultaneously, the Weimar Liszt Museum will mount a special exhibition, called "Franz Liszt - a European in Weimar". (

Canadian visitors looking to follow Liszt’s trail through Germany next year should include a trip to Cologne. In September 1842, he gave a concert in this city on the Rhine to celebrate the laying of the foundation stone that marked Cologne Cathedral's completion.

Liszt also played in the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist and St. Lawrence in Merseburg, on the Romanesque Route near Leipzig. Treasures inside the cathedral include Germany's largest Romantic organ, on which he performed his Prelude and Fugue on B-A-C-H for the first time in 1856.

Thirty years later, on 3 August 1886, the composer was laid to rest in northern Bavaria, in Bayreuth's town cemetery. To celebrate the 200th anniversary of his birth, the town will host 150 different events in 2011 (

For more details, an overview of the 2011 Liszt-related events and for general travel information on Germany, please visit


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