I don't even qualify as an amateur when it comes to music analysis, but I do sometimes hear similar contours across pieces. This is such a case. Is there any criticism that suggests an allusion in the first movement of Liszt's 1st piano concerto to the first movement of Beethoven's 5th ("Emperor")?

As I listened to both this morning, they seemed to share a recurrent chromatic buildup in the piano to grand orchestral entrances, even with similar rhythm — but each time Liszt has the orchestra hold back instead. I'm having trouble finding a score with numbered measures, but compare e.g. the first 7 measures on page 4 of this score (see video) and the measures where the orchestra comes in on page 8 (labelled 10) of this simplified score (see video), incidentally occurring around the same time in the two pieces. Something like this happens a few times, and the quieter passages also have a similar feel.

Am I out to lunch? Verstehe ich das nicht? :)

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    Of course Beethoven would have been a huge influence on any pianist-composer during this time period... dpmms.cam.ac.uk/~tf/liszt.html Commented Jan 5, 2019 at 21:20
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    Let’s not forget Beethoven taught Czerny who taught Liszt so there is a clear line of influence.
    – 11684
    Commented Feb 3, 2019 at 2:45
  • It wasn't until the 1950's when the integral serialist Pierre Boulez could finally state that Beethoven's influence had expired. Commented Jun 4, 2019 at 21:30
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    Beethoven had a huge direct influence on Liszt and this piece. I’ll write an answer soon.
    – d_g_m
    Commented Sep 24, 2020 at 3:27
  • @CamilleGoudeseune Boulez was wrong. He tried to push his school of contemporary classical music (Darmstadt folks and the French school which followed him) ahead, but one may easily see today, in 2020, how Beethoven's influence stands still in his jubilee and how he still exert pressure on new composers, usually at non concert styles. Commented Nov 3, 2020 at 21:00

1 Answer 1


Well I think that it is because they were all composed in the 1800s, so the music had to cater to the styles of people back then, like how many pop songs today resemble each other (14 huge songs that basically sound the same as another), because they are for a specific audience.

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    Many of these pop songs sound very similar because they have similar scales, chord progressions, etc. There are tons of pop songs that sound somewhat different from each other, so what in particular do those pop songs share? The same could be said for classical music or any other genre.
    – awe lotta
    Commented Dec 15, 2019 at 15:37

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