Music: Durable Pianist

In the 1870s, when pianists had long hair and belabored the keyboard thunderously in the "grand manner," many of the world's promising pianists were still taking lessons from long-haired Composer-Pianist Franz Liszt. Of Liszt's pupils today, only a few white-haired oldsters survive. Of these survivors only one can still draw a crowd to a concert hall; a stocky, orange-whiskered veteran named Moriz Rosenthal.

On Nov. 13, 1888 Pianist Rosenthal, 25 and mopheaded, sat down to a piano in Manhattan's old Steinway Hall, crashed and rippled through Liszt's finger-punishing Don Juan Fantasia. Manhattan concertgoers,...

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