My anthropology instructor mentioned the other day that Franz Liszt "had his fingers broken so no one else could play like him". Now, it seems pretty obvious that this is not true (how would it even work?) but I have no idea where he got this from. I can't seem to find any sort of reference to this anywhere online. Does anyone know where he might have gotten an idea like this? (Or how having your fingers broken would allow you to play piano substantially differently than anyone else?)
Posted by franjava on :
I think the instructor meant broken and reset in a different way (couldn't tell if that's what you meant.) I'd ask your teacher for his/her source on this. It sounds like a UL to me. I don't know any pianist, organist, or instrumentalist of any kind who would ever injure themselves on purpose! Even if they THOUGHT it could help them be unique or better in any way. Kinda weird...
Posted by TwoGuyswithaHat on :
The great guitarist Les Paul was in a rather nasty accident in the 1950s in which, among other injuries broke his left arm rather badly. When it came time for the doctor to set it, they knew he wasn't going to have full motion of his arm again, so Les Paul asked for him to set his arm so that he could continue playing guitar.
Posted by Red Squirrel on :
An Anacdote in David Mitchell's Cloud Atlas mentions Liszt broke his fingers when trying to strengthening them by hanging weights off them in an attempt to make his hands stronger.
It's a novel but it sounds like this is a legend related to the OP.
Posted by geminilee on :
Maybe that is it, Red Squirrel. The instructor may have read the novel or heard it somewhere and corrupted the story. He is not always factual; he spouts a lot of half truths, misconceptions, and ULs.
Posted by Signora Del Drago on :
The only thing I've heard about Liszt is that he had a much longer reach than most and that, because of this, Chopin couldn't play his music exactly as written. This, as you know, may or may not be true, but my music teacher said it was.
TwoGuys, I'm sure you know the old joke. "Will I be able to play the violin, doctor?" "Yes." "Wonderful! I couldn't play it before my accident." Never mind. I got it.
Posted by Floater on :
quote:Originally posted by TwoGuyswithaHat: The great guitarist Les Paul was in a rather nasty accident in the 1950s in which, among other injuries broke his left arm rather badly. When it came time for the doctor to set it, they knew he wasn't going to have full motion of his arm again, so Les Paul asked for him to set his arm so that he could continue playing guitar.
[nitpick] It was his right elbow that was injured and he had it set slightly bent so that he could still reach the strings on his quitar with his right hand. [/nitpick]