The Liszt Institute Foundation NPO

The Liszt Institute was founded in 1997 by Maria Rossana Dalmonte as “Associazione Istituto Liszt”, an “Association of Associations” having as co-founders the Presidents of the Hungarian-Italian Association, French-Italian Association, Austrian-Italian Association and German-Italian Association. Since Liszt is a European Artist, all the Associations of the countries where he lived participated in the “ Franz Liszt Association”. In 2010 the Association was transformed into a Foundation, when Rossana Dalmonte donated real estate, which granted a lasting and independent activity.

The Institute’s institutional purpose is the promotion and diffusion of Franz Liszt’s works, through both musicological research and performance.

Its first assignment is to gather material: manuscripts, scores, books and articles concerning Liszt and his contemporaries. To date, numerous Lisztian autograph scores and letters and more than 6000 books, articles and scores have been purchased. These include many first editions of Liszt’s work. This means that, although on the one hand, the Institute’s Lisztian library is one of the most well-stocked in Italy, on the other hand, an immense quantity of literature still remains to be collected.

In order to promote musicological research, the Institute publishes the Quaderni dell’Istituto Liszt and the Rarità Lisztiana series. The former is a musicological journal in diverse languages regarding Liszt’s works and life. The latter gives performers and scholars the opportunity to have access to pieces by Liszt which are unavailable in correct modern editions. It also allows them to discover unknown works or those which had been considered lost.

Alongside these publishing initiatives, the Institute has created the Liszt Prize. This is a biennial or triennial musicological contest which awards a prize of 1000 Euros for the best research regarding Liszt.

Depending on the available resources, the Institute offers its patronage – especially in the guise of scientific historical-musicological collaboration – to important international events concerning the life and work of Franz Liszt. The Institute promoted the International Conference Franz Liszt and the Birth of Modern Europe (Villa Serbelloni, Bellagio 1998) which was under the auspices of the University of Trento, the Rockefeller Foundation, Virginia Polytechnic and State University. It organised the conference The Piano in the Nineteenth Century and the Philharmonic Academy of Bologna (Bologna 2000) in collaboration with the Royal Philharmonic Academy of Bologna. It gave its patronage to the 15th Study Day regarding the artistic heritage of the Osservanza Convent (Bologna 2003), the VII Liszt Festival (Grottammare 2009), the Rose Room Festival (Tivoli 2009), the conference Chopin and Liszt: Two Composers and their Relation to the Parisian Musical Scene (Lucca 2010) and EUROMAC VII (Rome 2011).

The Foundation’s second assignment is to offer the public a concert season from October to May, using the formula of the nineteenth-century musical Salon and the conference with a concert. The programmes, which are the result of historiographical research, not only investigate Liszt’s opus but also that of his contemporaries. The emphasis is on works which are neglected in the traditional concert repertoire, approached from innovative perspectives.

The concerts generally take place at the Institute on a Steinway grand piano dating from 1860. The instrument is similar to one donated to Liszt and currently preserved in the Teatro alla Scala Museum. The piano was restored by Flavio Ponzi with the expert advice of Bologna University’s Institute of Acoustics.

The Institute has a guest room, which artists and scholars conducting research on Liszt may use for limited periods.