Long before Bieber Fever, Beatlemania or Deadheads, there was Lisztomania. The term, coined by writer Heinrich Heine (1841), was used to describe "the intense fan frenzy directed toward Franz Liszt," pianist/composer (Oct 22, 1811-July 31, 1886), during his performances." 

According to Wikipedia, "Lisztomania was characterized by a hysterical reaction to Liszt and his concerts…Admirers of Liszt would swarm over him, fighting over his handkerchiefs and gloves. Fans would wear his portrait on brooches and cameos. Women would try to get locks of his hair, and whenever he broke a piano string, admirers would try to obtain it in order to make a bracelet..."

In more recent years, the term has been used for a film (1975) and its soundtrack and even a popular song (2009) by the band Phoenix. In case it slid by you, let me point out that 2011 marks the 200th anniversary of Liszt's birth. 

In honor of his bicentennial, on March 23, 2011, the Cleveland Institute of Music in collaboration with Cuyahoga Community College will present Australian pianist, composer, conductor and Liszt aficionado Leslie Howard and the CIM Orchestra performing world premiere works by this composer. In an interview on WCLV 104.9 FM on Monday, March 21, Howard described how he, working with another composer, deciphered some of the never-before performed manuscripts by this awe-inspiring musician. It was a fascinated discussion and should be an amazing concert. 

Inspired by the event, I thought it would be fun to fashion an outfit set around or about that period of history. The dress is an actual antique* circa 1870s, so it does contain silk. I recognize and acknowledge that they did not have access to as wide a range of fabrics as we do and certainly not the suitable synthetic substitutes we do today. The reproduction pieces, such as the victorian-inspired handbag, boots and lace gloves do not use animal skin/fibers. 

According to the antique shop selling it, the Steinway Grand Piano I've included here was likewise crafted in the late 19th century, so it *could've* been constructed and played during the composer's lifetime. 

Having determined that this concert-goer had the fever for Franz, I was certain she would've fashioned her own F.L. brooch, snuck a lock of his hair and would carry binoculars in his beaded bag to ensure you wouldn't miss any detail at a Liszt performance. Naturally, she'd also leave a red rose for Franzy, as she might call him, to convey her undying love for the man and his music. 

*I highly recommend visiting the website where this dress/image originates--it's a vintage fashion feast for the eyes.
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