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Heitor Villa-Lobos

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Biography

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (1887 – 1959)

Heitor Villa-Lobos (March 5, 1887 — November 17, 1959) was a pioneering Brazilian modernist composer. He penned twelve symphonies, four operas, five ballets, and one of the most important string quartet cycles of the twentieth century. His music is noted for its exotic sound palette and formal inventiveness, influenced both by Brazilian folk music and stylistic elements from the European classical tradition.

Villa-Lobos was born in Rio de Janeiro. After his father died, he earned a living for his family by playing in cinema orchestras and street bands in Rio. As a cellist in an opera company, he made early attempts at composing grand opera. Encouraged by Arthur Napoleão, a pianist and music publisher, he decided to compose seriously.

From 1905 Villa-Lobos began exploring Brazil’s interior in a series of expeditions that exposed him to native Brazilian musical culture. Though serious doubt has been cast on some of his tales from this decade of travel - about his capture and near escape from cannibals, for instance - his experiences turned him off the idea of conventional compositional training and rendered him a lifelong advocate of nationalist themes in Brazilian classical music.

European influences were still vital to his development. A 1917 tour by the Ballets Russes left a strong impact.

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  • Retinend

    The 2nd Cello Concerto is stunning!

    11 Jun 8:42pm Reply
  • TotenFaschist

    bio mentions nothing about his guitar composition, even though it's what he's most famous for..?

    4 Dec 2013 Reply
  • demoissster

    Brilliant!

    17 Jul 2013 Reply
  • MusicHallofFame

    The Music Hall of Fame are delighted to induct Heitor Villa-Lobos into the Class of 1983. Congratulations. Please vist our page too see the latest inductees into the Music Hall of Fame.

    26 Aug 2012 Reply
  • alanamuniz

    Happy Birthday ♥

    5 Mar 2012 Reply
  • emaskye

    dude is a master of piano miniatures

    24 Sep 2011 Reply
  • HowlBR

    Ah, sim... mas pra quê isso? moça sem noção.

    12 Sep 2011 Reply
  • denisbastos

    Eu me referi à moça mais abaixo... está fazendo uma verdadeira campanha anti-tabaco no lastfm, basta olhar as páginas de artistas de jazz e outros clássicos que fumavam cigarro, charuto e etc..

    9 Sep 2011 Reply
  • HowlBR

    Tanto faz se ele está fumando ou não, só achei que estava na hora de tirar a foto da sinuca. Mas, e daí? bota a foto que quiser, não precisa se alterar por um recado despretensioso de uma pessoa qualquer... :)

    8 Sep 2011 Reply
  • denisbastos

    Mano, vão tudo tomar no cu quem se incomoda com um charuto... se o cara fumava, porra, qual o problema? O tabaco fez parte da vida dos artistas do século 19 e metade do século 20, fugir disso é acreditar que artista não caga, não peida, que brilha no escuro. PQP! E outra, o tabaco não afetava a capacidade dele de compor fudidamente como ele compunha.

    7 Sep 2011 Reply
  • victorazm

    A foto dele jogando sinuca é a foto mais bad ass possível; tem que colocar ela de volta...

    7 Sep 2011 Reply
  • HowlBR

    Por que o povo persiste em colocar essa foto? é muito "Made in cachaça's land". Poxa, tão zoando com um mano correria de prima, um truta sério. E os artistas similares então, nem se fala...

    6 Sep 2011 Reply
  • denisbastos

    ce n'est pas possible!!

    2 Sep 2011 Reply
  • Parisblues

    Il y a un large choix d'images sans avoir à faire d'incitation au tabac. s'il vous plait votez . / there's a large choice of pictures without doing tabacco incitation. please vote./Hay una gran variedad de imágenes sin tener que hacer incitación tabaco. Por favor, vote.

    25 Aug 2011 Reply
  • _KevMusic_

    Rudepoêma. Rudepoêma. Rudepoêma. Rudepoêma. Rudepoêma. Rudepoêma.

    16 Aug 2011 Reply
  • Vinderen

    Arrepia, simplesmente demais..

    15 Jun 2011 Reply
  • AquilaTeofilo

    Master!

    7 Jun 2011 Reply
  • PhelipeStanley

    Gênio da música brasileira, um mito!

    7 May 2011 Reply
  • PhelipeStanley

    É o Brasil sintetizado em cordas [2]

    7 May 2011 Reply
  • God-Dog

    UHAHUAHUAUHAUHAUH A foto principal tá a cara do Brasil! xD

    17 Apr 2011 Reply
  • All 94 shouts