Hungarian-born Franz Liszt was the first musical superstar. He may have been the greatest piano player of all time. He was also a composer, concert promoter and conductor. He had several love affairs before taking Holy Orders in the Catholic Church.

  • Publisher: Mitchell Lane
  • Series: Masters of Music
  • Year Published: 2003
  • Age Level: 8-13
  • Category:


Appeals to average readers in middle school, but is useful for high school students as well. Opening with a comparison of Beatlemania and Lisztomania, the text returns to Liszt’s dandified appearance and his attraction for women and scandal, and ends with Liszt’s taking of holy orders. It also points out his hard work in becoming a musical superstar/composer/concert promoter/conductor, who later used his influence to mentor younger musicians. His story is seen against vignettes of the times: the Luddites’ fear of industrialization; the composing of “America”; the storming of The Alamo; the Irish Potato Famine; and Liszt’s countryman, Franz Kafka, who was born three years before the composer’s death. (Children’s Literature – Susan Hepler, Ph.D.)