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Vladimir Horowitz - Return to Chicago - Arpeggio, the 24th and the 26th of February

Wednesday, 24 February 2016 , ora 11.11

If you would like to vote for this cd please vote HERE

Vladimir Horowitz - 37 recitals and concerts in Chicago.

Over 25 years have passed since his death, and his name stirs yet admiration all over the world. It is perhaps because he lived in a time when leaving your personal mark meant everything for a true artist. Vladimir Horowitz was one of the 20th century's most brilliant pianists, who, according to critics, represented for the art of piano what Franz Liszt was almost a century before.

It is my pleasure to present to you in two CD review episodes of the program "Arpeggio", a double album released on November 13th, 2015, the recording of Vladimir Horowitz's last recital in Chicago, which took place on October 26th, 1986 at the Orchestra Hall of the "Windy City". The album is entitled "Vladimir Horowitz - Return to Chicago". In fact, over the course of his career, starting with 1928 the pianist had 37 "returns" to Chicago, out of which 27 were for solo recitals, and 4 of these (between 1960 and 1970) are considered by critics to be "the peak of his career". In 1986 Horowitz returned to Chicago, a gift for the city which, according to the artist, has always shown him extraordinary appreciation.

I think Chicago was my first success in America, even before New York - Vladimir Horowitz

"I think Chicago was my first success in America, even before New York. Even after 58 years, I cannot forget. Now, everywhere is the same. I am being spoiled everywhere… but Chicago is special for me. I like the people, the hall, everything." - said Vladimir Horowitz in one of the interviews released with the album. The first interview was taken by Norman Pellegrini, the host of the radio program WFMT - Chicago, and the second by Thomas Willis, a journalist for the Chicago Tribune, and was recorded on October 30th, 1974, upon Horowitz's return to Chicago after 6 years.

The recital opens with two sonatas by Domenico Scarlatti, followed by opuses of Vladimir Horowitz's favorite composers: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Aleksandr Skriabin. The second part brings new additions to the pianist's discography at Deutsche Grammophon, namely Arabesque op. 18 in C major by Robert Schumann and Mazurka no. 3, op.63 in C-sharp minor by Frédéric Chopin. The album also includes opuses by Franz Liszt and Moritz Moszkowski.

"Vladimir Horowitz - Return to Chicago" is a world premiere

The recital was broadcasted on WFMT - Chicago radio station on the evening of October 26th, 1986, so that a greater number of Chicagoans would be able to listen to his performance. The recording was forgotten in the WFMT - Chicago archives until October 2013, when it was discovered by producer Jon M. Samuels. The album was released on Novemeber 13th, 2015, giving us all the privilege of witnessing one of Vladimir Horowitz's most inspiring performances, his very last appearance in Chicago, in fact.

"Vladimir Horowitz - Return to Chicago" is part of the campaign "Vote for the classical album of 2016". Also, don't miss the CD Review during the program Arpeggio which will be broadcasted on the 24th and the 26th of February at Radio Romania Music, at 11.30.

Gabriel Marica
Translated by Elena Gherca
MTTLC, the University of Bucharest