About Franz Liszt's Album d'un voyageur, Book 1
The Album d'un Voyageur was Liszt's first major published piano cycle. Much of it was to be revised and to form the basis for his later masterpiece Années de pèlerinage, First Year: Switzerland. With its mixture of original works, transcriptions and fantasies, incorporating folk-music material and other composers' themes, it is a reflection of Liszt's wide-ranging creative process. The travelling in the title alludes to Liszt's flight from Paris to Geneva together with his lover Marie d'Agoult, a married member of the French aristocracy. They had three children together in the years between 1835 and 1839, and Liszt remained a European vagabond for almost a decade.Book I, "Impressions et poésies", is undoubtedly the most important. Almost all these pieces also appear in revised versions in the Swiss Années de pèlerinage. "Lyon" is the one significant exception, probably only because that town, though not very far from Geneva, is on the French side of the border.