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[These excerpts appear in Franz Liszt, New York: Knopf, 1983-1996. This web version is dated 11 April 2004, revised 30 May 2004.]

Excerpts on Pachmann

By Alan Walker

Vol. 2, p.306, footnote 12:

. . . But these cases, bad though they are, pale into insignificance beside the farrago of nonsense which was already starting to accumulate around the works of Chopin. . . . As for the F-minor Fantasy, its first two bars, so we learn, illustrate a knock at Chopin's door; the next two, his reply ("Entrez, entrez!"); and the door opens to admit George Sand, Camille Pleyel, Liszt, and others, who arrange themselves around Chopin to the solemn tread of the march. Eventually Sand, with whom he has quarelled, falls on her knees and begs forgiveness. Vladimir de Pachmann used to tell this particular story on the concert stage, before delivering his "interpretation" of the fantasy, and after cheerfully informing the audience that he "got it straight from Liszt." Thus is musical history made. [NN: And thus is it disparaged without providing justification for the disparagement.]

Vol. 3, p.462:

Liszt arrived in Budapest on February 4 [1884]. He heard Rubinstein give a piano recital in the auditorium of the Hungária Hotel on February 16; and the following month he attended a Philharmonic concert especially to hear Vladimir de Pachmann play Chopin's F-minor Piano Concerto. Pachmann never knew that he was in the audience, since Liszt had p.463 hidden himself in a box at the back of the theatre [NN: that hardly constitutes a proof that Pachmann never knew Liszt was in the audience]; he had long since stopped making official appearances at the Philharmonic concerts, with which organisation he was still in contention.10 Both Pachmann and Rubinstein paid tribute to Liszt by performing some of his solo pieces, including Au bord d'une source, which was in the repertoire of both men.

Vol. 3, p.488:

Although the hour was late [on Friday 9 April 1886], Liszt accepted an invitation from the Prince of Wales to go over to Prince's Hall [in London] for the last of the so-called "smoking concerts" of the Royal Amateur Orchestral Society. Liszt sat next to the prince and heard the orchestra play pieces by Beethoven and Rossini. From the standpoint of posterity, the most interesting event of that "smoker" was the appearance of Vladimir de Pachmann playing piano solos by Henselt and Liszt himself. It was, in the words of one reporter, a jovial evening in which the abbé "showed himself thoroughly smoke-proof."23 [Musical Times, May 1, 1886, p.257.]