Brendel’s Fantasy

Günther Freitag / Translated by Eugene H. Hayworth

Brendel’s Fantasy reads a little like a stream-of-consciousness narrative, where the mundane and the bizarre are given equal prominence and emotions ebb and flow.’ 
Scottish Sunday Herald 

‘A deftly written story that shows the power of music and imagination … an illuminating portrait of modern Italian society.’ 
hr2 Radio


Höller, a successful businessman and Schubert enthusiast, has been diagnosed with a terminal brain tumour. Without telling his dysfunctional family he sells his business and travels to the sleepy Tuscan village of Castelnuovo. There he hopes to stage the definitive performance of Schubert’s Wanderer Fantasy. Befriending a host of village misfits, Höller is plagued by the fear of his impending death and the hallucinations that accompany his illness as he writes a series of letters to Alfred Brendel, inviting him to Italy to perform the Fantasy. But will he acquiesce? Brendel’s Fantasy is a compelling, darkly comic, illuminating portrait of mortality and desire.

GÜNTHER FREITAG was born in 1952 in Feldkirch, Austria. He has received several awards including the Forum Stadtpark Literature Prize and the Culture Prize of the city of Leoben.

EUGENE H. HAYWORTH is the translator of several works of contemporary German fiction and nonfiction.

Additional information



Published Date