Franz Liszt (1811-1886): Original piano works under the title Ave Maria. A research on the composerís religious musical symbolisms, on the occasion of the 200th anniversary of his birth
This paper examines Franz Lisztís works for solo piano, under the title Ave Maria, and has been selected on the occasion of the 200th anniversary of his birth. Franz Liszt has composed four original works under the same title; those constituting transcriptions from other works or arrangements of works of other composers have been excluded. These four works are based upon different music material, have been written successively at about ten-year intervals and convey the same extramusical content: the famous catholic prayer to Maria, Mother of God.
The paper focuses mainly on the combined study of the hymnís symbolic rendition by Liszt, in relation to his compositional style, since the aforementioned works represent the mature and final thirty-year compositional activity. At the same time, the decoding of the relationship between extramusical content and music is occasionally facilitated by the composerís registration of the hymnís verses on specific points of the score for the piano, or by the correspondence of the Latin text to the melodies of the choral versions, whenever they exist.
Despite the diversity of these four works, their music content highlights the maintenance of specific practices for the symbolic rendition of the conceptual content of the prayer, which also relates to the composerís firm attitude over the years, towards the values of Christian faith.