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Rachmaninoff: Piano Concerto No. 3, Op. 30 (Live Recording, Montreux 1967)

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It was 1958 in Moscow, in the middle of the cold war, and a 24-year old Texan just won the first edition of the Tchaikovsky Competition. The event had been held (in the wake of the technological victory represented by the launch of Sputnik) in order to demonstrate the cultural superiority of the Soviet Union. President Khrushchev himself could do nothing in face of the eight-minute standing ovation that the audience gave the soloist after his performance of Rachmaninoff’s Third Piano Concerto: the legend of Van Cliburn was born. A parade was organized in New York upon his return, something that had never been done before for a classical musician. A competition in his name was created in Fort Worth in 1962. He has performed for all of the Presidents of the United States since Harry Truman. And in 1967 he was on his way to Montreux on invitation to perform at the Septembre musical festival. The programme included the famous “Rach 3” that had contributed to his myth, accompanied by Wolfgang Sawallisch and the Gürzenich Orchestra from Cologne. An absolute must!


Born: July 12, 1934 in Shreveport, LA

Genre: Classical

Years Active: '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s

Pianist Van Cliburn was arguably the most celebrated classical performer of the modern era, renowned for his flawless technical prowess and unparalleled romantic sensibility. Born Harvey Lavan Cliburn, Jr. in Shreveport, Louisiana, on July 12, 1934, he first took up piano at the age of three, learning the instrument from his mother, Rildia Bee O'Bryan Cliburn, herself an accomplished performer; in 1938 the family relocated to Kilgore, Texas, and there the young boy gave his first public recital,...
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Rachmaninoff: Piano Concerto No. 3, Op. 30 (Live Recording, Montreux 1967), Van Cliburn
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