Moyo znakomstvo s Listom
My Acquaintance with Liszt
Vasilii Bessel’ (1843-1907) founded a music publishing firm and a music trading company. In the 1870s he published the journal Muzykal’nyi listok [Musical leaflet] and in the 1880s, the journal Muzykal’noe obozrenie [Musical review]. V. Bessel’s and Co. published many works by the composers of the Balakirev circle.
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My acquaintance with Franz Liszt came about because of the policy of our firm. At first, I went to Weimar, on the advice of C[esar] A[ntonovich] Cui and of the late Musorgsky, to show Liszt the piano scores for the operas The Stone Guest by A[leksandr] S[ergeevich] Dargomyzhsky and William Ratcliff by C[esar] Cui, which had just come off the press. To allow Liszt to read the text of The Stone Guest, a German or a French translation had to be added (the opera Ratcliff had been published in both languages). Then Musorgsky, who knew German rather well, undertook to interline Bodenstedt’s translation of The Stone Guest, which seemed quite close to the original, and gave me that copy for Liszt.1