Franz Liszt

In the Classical Corner article, "Dark Star: Franz Liszt's Journey through the Dark Side of Tonality" (Classical Corner 6/28/2007), I stated that Cosima Wagner (Liszt's daughter, and Richard Wagner's second wife) sought to suppress late Liszt compositions on the grounds that they reflected Liszt's old age and deteriorating mental condition. Leslie Howard, a leading authority on Liszt who has recorded all of the composer's solo piano music for Hyperion, and who created the revised "S." numbering system for Liszt's complete catalogue of works (and who has been extremely helpful to AMG over the years with regards to untangling Liszt's over 1300 compositions), corrects that assertion and expands the knowledge base of this situation via email:
"I can't think that Cosima ever said or wrote anything about FL's late works -- she didn't know or hear any of his music in his last years. [Anton] Göllerich (a diarist, politician and pedagogue close to the Wagner-Liszt family-ed.) held back quite a few things, however, because he didn't want Liszt to be misunderstood. He knew, for example, of the publishers' turning down 'Via Crucis' [this should be on your list!!!], and didn't want to risk people calling Liszt's late pieces the ravings of someone who had lost his way." – Leslie Howard

Indeed, Via Crucis should have been in the list of Liszt's "modernistic" compositions, and in his letter, Leslie Howard adds a few more: