Franz Liszt, Austro-Hungarian composer and pianist, 1811-1886
Liszt gained renown in Europe during the early nineteenth century for his virtuosic skill as a pianist. He was said by his contemporaries to have been the most technically advanced pianist of his age, and in the 1840s he was considered to be the greatest pianist of all time. Liszt was also a well-known and influential composer, piano teacher and conductor. He was a benefactor to other composers, including Richard Wagner, Hector Berlioz, Camille Saint-Saëns, Edvard Grieg and Alexander Borodin. As a composer, Liszt was one of the most prominent representatives of the "New German School". He left behind an extensive and diverse body of work in which he influenced his forward-looking contemporaries and anticipated some 20th-century ideas and trends.