Arthur Rubinstein plays Heitor Villa-Lobos – “Prole do bebê No.1” – O Polichinello. Unmissable.
Unlike almost every other instrumentalist age did not affect his playing at all. If it wasn’t for failing eye sight he could have kept going to his nighties.
He was one of a kind. Maybe overall not the best technique but the best heart. His autobiography is outstanding. He knew everyone and was something of a Don Juan.
1. Wow 2. Why isn’t this wonderful whole suite played more often? 3. So glad I’m old enough to have heard him in person (not in Villa-Lobos, but with Chopin and Beethoven providing a more than acceptable alternative).
Curiously solecistic heading. Referring to Villa-Lobos as just ‘Lobos’ is like referring to one of the Day-Lewis clan as just ‘Lewis’.
Actually, I think Brazilians refer to him as just “Villa”..
Thanks for this – I had the pleasure of seeing him play the piece live as an encore in London in the mid-70s, and remember to this day the brilliant effect of his performance.
The original Lobos! Lovely title. Thanks Norman. I saw him twice at the RFH when he was well into his 80s. Once he played three concertos on the trot with Haitink and the LPO for charity. The second time a Chopin solo recital. Only Horowitz had the same magnetism live. Impossible to describe – I have never seen it approached let alone matched.
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