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Vladimir Horowitz
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    (October 1, 1903-November 5, 1989)
    Became a U.S. citizen (1944)
    Won 25 Grammy awards
    Recorded famous versions of Rachmaninoff's 'Third Piano Concerto'
    His sound is harsh, which is further aggravated by his preference for spiky pianos.
    He often reworked entire sections of the pieces he performed, an absolute 'don't' among classical musicians.
    In fact, much like Glenn Gould, he didn't even need to change the notes to alter a work beyond recognition.
    In order to spare his son military service, Horowitz's father claimed he was born in 1904, giving rise to a persistent confusion as to his date of birth.
    He was a go-getter: marrying famous conductor Arturo Toscanini's daughter Wanda as merely a career move.
    His indifference to Sonia, his only child, led to her commit suicide - he couldn't have cared less.
    He hid his homosexuality.
    He was to bow ties what Imelda Marcos was to shoes.
    He was depressed which was treated with electroshock treatment.
    He wasn't a child prodigy.
    He was a great chess player and excelled at cards.
    He overcame his health problems. He suffered from colitis for most of his adult life.
    When unable to be on stage, he recorded; sometimes in his own living room! (Until his very last days).
    He championed composers who, like Scarlatti or Scriabin, were to become part of the mainstream repertoire.
    His compositions (he never wrote them down) feature stunning virtuosic effects: some passages created, for instance, the impression that he played with three hands at once.
    His dynamic range, that went from hardly audible pianissimos to almost unsufferable fortissimos, and the variety of his colors make him one of the most imitated pianists.

Credit: Sviatoslav Mixer

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