Horowitz: his life and music

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Simon & Schuster, 1992 - Biography & Autobiography - 427 pages
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"On April 20, 1986, the wheel came full circle for Vladimir Horowitz with an audible click, and he recognized it as such". So begins this definitive biography of the most electrifying piano virtuoso of our times, Vladimir Horowitz, describing his return to Russia after a sixty-one-year absence. From there, the book turns back to Horowitz's privileged and pampered childhood in Kiev, where he started to play the piano at the age of five. We then follow him through his tempestuous years at the Kiev Conservatory, which he entered before he was thirteen and where he was immediately at odds with all of his professors. He was already an individualist. We trace his development as an artist and his defection to Berlin in the turbulent aftermath of the Russian Revolution. We see him in Berlin and Paris, metamorphosed from a provincial to a colossus of the European stage. After his American debut in 1928 he becomes an awe-inspiring figure who is envied by musicians all over the world, exhibiting a kind of high-voltage playing that paralyzed audiences. Yet there was another side to him. There were times when he was invaded by demons, tortured by self-doubts. Author Harold C. Schonberg charts not only the course of Horowitz's many triumphs but also his mysterious withdrawals from the stage and other troubling aspects of the great pianist's life. This full portrait of Horowitz's life and music benefits particularly from hitherto unpublished anecdotes and information that derive from a series of taped interviews the author conducted with Horowitz toward the end of his life. Here is Horowitz the man, the musician, the icon, and even the raconteur. Through Schonberg's assessment of the special kind ofgenius that Horowitz brought to the piano and of his position among the other keyboard giants of his time, this biography is a panorama that takes in a good part of this century's piano world.

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Horowitz: his life and music

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

Schonberg, a former senior music critic of the New York Times, has written a straightforward account of the great pianist's musical progression through life. He includes many quotes and comments from ... Read full review

Review: Horowitz: His Life and Music

User Review  - Blaine - Goodreads

Fantastic life, absorbing read. Full of juicy anecdotes of Maestro Horowitz interacting with the greatest musicians, composers, conductors, and cultural elite of the 20th century. Schonberg writes ... Read full review

Contents

Preface
13
Return of the Native
19
Growing Up in Kiev
36
Copyright

31 other sections not shown

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About the author (1992)

Harold C. Schonberg, senior New York Times music critic for twenty years, was the first in his field to be awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Criticism (1971). He is the author of many articles and eight books, including one on chess. Schonberg lives in New York City.

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