The Hugh Hodgson School of Music will host the American Liszt Society Bicentennial Festival Feb. 17-19. The festival, which commemorates the 200th anniversary of the birth of Hungarian composer, pianist and teacher Franz Liszt, will feature more than 60 performers and lecturers. Registration for the festival is $140 and includes admission to all events and must be postmarked by Jan. 5. Registration form and schedule details are available at www.uga.edu/music/lisztfest2010/.
The annual festivals of the ALS provide an opportunity to learn more about one of the most influential musicians in history. The 2011 festival presents 23 sessions, including orchestra, string, wind and vocal performances, and a master class on Liszt songs by baritone Thomas Hampson, as well as the offerings of 42 pianists and nine lecturers. A festival highlight will be the world premiere performance of Pulitzer Prize winner William Bolcom’s song cycle Laura Sonnets. Commissioned by ALS for the 2011 festival, Laura Sonnets is based on a cycle of five Petrarch sonnets and shares a common source of inspiration with Liszt’s Petrarch Sonnets. The cycle will be part of Hampson’s recital on Feb. 18 at 8 p.m. in Hodgson Concert Hall. The festival also will feature the first performance of a work for solo piano chosen as the winner of the ALS Bicentennial Composition Competition. The $4,000 prize is provided by Steinway and Sons.