Saturday, September 13, 2008

Piano played by Liszt, Schumann and Brahms at the Las Vegas Liberace Museum

When we were in Las Vegas we went to the Liberace Museum. Besides all of the costumes and Liberacinalia there is also a collection of pianos that he had owned. Some of them were famous before Liberace ever owned them. This one was reportedly played by Liszt, Schumann and Brahms which combined with its Serbian connection below makes it a very historically interesting piece.

From the description plate:
Bosendorfer Style Grand Piano c. 1830 Serial No. 222
Viennese piano maker Anton Pokorny made this "Bosendorfer Style" grand piano in 1830. From 1842 to 1858, it resided with exiled Serbian Prince Michael Orbenovic III in Vienna, Austria. This piano was reportedly played by such composers as Liszt, Schumann and Brahms. In 1860, Prince Obrenovic assumed the throne in Serbia (Yugosolavia) and brought this piano to the royal palace where it remained for many years. Just prior to his assassination in 1868, he gave the piano to his fiancee, whose family later gave it to their relatives, the Dragisic family.
The Serbs and Serbia seem to have a lot of trouble with assassinations and turbulent rulers. To hear some of the pieces that might have been played by famous composers on the piano I recommend the Piano Society where you can find free recordings by talented amateurs and professionals of works by Liszt, Schumann or Brahms.

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