Ferruccio Busoni by E. J. Dent (1932)

London: Ernst Eulenberg, 1974. [ISBN 090387315X]

This foundational classic of Busonology is full of indulgences from a man who personally knew and adored Busoni. As literature, the book is quite simply a delight to read! Its chatty banter and anecdotal impertinence is solidly supported by… really fabulous English prose and malicious wit! It’s no exaggeration to say that this biography would entertain someone who hasn’t the vaguest interest in Busoni!

Several very useful appendices contain a survey of Busoni’s piano repertory, editorial contributions, and a list of compositions "he considered worthy of record." Despite its 80 years, this books still contains fewer errors than newer biographies such as Della Couling’s "Busoni: A Musical Ishmael" and promises infinitely more pleasure.

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Ferruccio Busoni • Pianist and Composer
Last update: Aug-22-2008