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streaming > Liszt & Dante: Fantasia quasi Sonata – A performance by pianist Daniela Roma



streaming > Liszt & Dante: Fantasia quasi Sonata – A performance by pianist Daniela Roma

Daniela Roma

In this video, recorded live at the Edwards Auditorium, University of Rhode Island, pianist Daniela Roma interprets Fantasia quasi Sonata by F. Liszt, a piece inspired by the composer's reading of Dante’s Divine Comedy.

Many composers have been inspired by Dante Alighieri's Divine Comedy, one of the greatest masterpieces of Italian literature.

Après une Lecture de Dante: Fantasia quasi Sonata (“After a reading of Dante: A Fantasia, almost a Sonata”), also known as The Dante Sonata, is a musical work in one movement composed by Franz Liszt in 1849. Clearly inspired by Alighieri’s poem, it was first published in 1856 as part of the second volume of the Années de pèlerinage or “Years of Pilgrimage”, and it is considered one of the most difficult piano pieces ever written.

The Dante Sonata was originally a small musical piece, composed by Liszt in 1830, and divided into two thematic movements. It was first performed in Vienna in November 1839, but upon moving to Weimar in 1849, Liszt revised the sonata and gave it its current title, based on Victor Hugo's eponymous poem.

The piece begins with the metaphorical sound of the trumpets announcing Dante’s descent into hell, recreating the groans and desperation of the damned souls encountered by Dante. The central part of the piece describes the tormented love between Paolo and Francesca, as recounted in Canto V of The Divine Comedy.

There are two interpretations of the sonata. According to some musicologists, the work also contains references to Dante’s Paradise, because in the final part we finally see the light and, hence, Heaven itself. Others see it as the complete opposite:  the rapid chromatic octave section at the end of the piece represents the three heads of Satan in Dante's Inferno and hence Liszt would be referring only to Hell, as also Victor Hugo does in his poem.


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Video (via YouTube)

Recorded live at Edwards Auditorium, University of Rhode Island
Directed by Spenser G. Bartsch | Voice-over: Ernesto Orrico
Special thanks to prof. Michelangelo La Luna,
Department of Modern and Classical Languages



daniela roma


Daniela Roma graduated in piano with honors from the Conservatory “F. Torrefranca,” in Vibo Valentia, Italy. She took Master classes with Aquiles Delle Vigne, at the Internationale Sommerakademie Universitat Mozarteum, in Salzburg, Austria. She also took Master classes with teachers such as Daniel Rivera, Gabriel Kwok, and Choon-Mo Kang.

Under the guidance of Aquiles Delle Vigne, Daniela also received a Master Degree with highest honors in Piano Performance at the Hogeschool voor Muziek, University of Professional Education, Rotterdam, Netherlands.

She performed solo and chamber music concerts famous theaters such as Wiener Saal – Mozarteum (Salzburg, Austria); Theater Saal – Orff Institute (Salzburg, Austria); Concertgebouw Jurriaanse Zaal – de Doelen (Rotterdam, Netherlands); Konzertsaal-SchloB Frhonburg (Salzburg, Austria); Theatre Pedrotti (Pesaro, Italy); Ademollo Hall – Palazzo Ducale and Palazzo Sani (Lucca, Italy); Theatre A. Rendano (Cosenza, Italy); Auditorium della Discoteca di Stato (Rome, Italy), Villa Doria (Naples, Italy); Parlement Bruxellois (Bruxelles, Belgium); Fine Arts Center (University of Rhode Island, United States of America); Dante Alighieri Society, Cambridge MA (United States of America), Casa Zerilli-Marimò, New York University, New York City (United States of America).

She also performed at the following venues: San Giacomo Festival (Bologna, Italy); Giornate Rendaniane (Carolei, Italy); Messiaen Study Days at the Codarts Muziek Zaal (Rotterdam, Netherlands); Aurora International Festival (Crotone, Italy); Festival Courants d’Airs (Bruxelles, Belgium); Piano Extravaganza, Rhode Island (United States); Piano Concerts in Villa Rendano, Cosenza (Italy) and in Navy Palace, Napoli (Italy).

Daniela Roma recorded rare-music compositions for two-pianos by Ferenc Liszt with Phoenix Classics. For the same record company, she also recorded the Alfonso Rendano piano works (world premiere recording) and, together with the pianist Rodolfo Rubino, Alfonso Rendano’s piano concerto with two pianos (the same one that Ferenc Liszt and Alfonso Rendano played together in Weimar). Together with the chamber ensemble of Conservatorium  Fausto Torrefranca (Vibo Valentia, Italy), and the pianist Roberto Galletto, she recorded the Carneval of the Animals by Saint Saens, for the record company Metis Film, Monte Porzio, Italy.

More recently she recorded, with Modus String Quartet, for Digressione Music, her new CD containing Alfonso Rendano’s Quintetto for piano and strings, and pieces for piano.

Daniela Roma is also the artistic director of the Alfonso Rendano International Music Festival held in Villa Rendano, Cosenza, Italy.



Data: Da Lun 18 Ott 2021 a Gio 18 Nov 2021

Organizzato da : Embassy of Italy, IIC Washington

Ingresso : Libero