Historical interpretations of Friderick Chopin works

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Guiomar Novães - biography


Guiomar Noväes, a Brazilian pianist, Guiomar Noväes was born on 28 February 1896 (or 1895 according to some sources) in São João da Boa Vista near São Paulo, and died on 7 March 1979 in São Paulo. At the age of four she began playing the piano under her mother, Ana de Carvalho Menezes, also a pianist and composer. From the age of seven she had classes in São Paulo with Luigi Chiafarelli, a pupil of Busoni. At the age of eight she performed Beethoven’s Piano sonata in C major op. 53 at a joined concert with Pablo Casals and Harold Bauer. Three years later she could play Grande fantaisie triomphale sur l’hymne national brésilien op. 69 by Louis Gottschalk and paraphrases by Liszt. In 1909 she received a government grant for studies in Europe and she left for France. In the entrance examinations at the Paris Consevatoire, where the jury consisted of Gabriel Fauré, Maurycy Moszkowski and Claude Debussy, she bested 380 candidates and won the competition, subsequently commencing education in the piano class under Isidore Philipp. She graduated with a first prize for piano playing. She made her great successful debut at the Parisian Érard Hall with Châtelet Orchestre directed by Gabriel Pierné. This was followed by a tour of England, Italy Germany and Switzerland. In 1914 she returned to Brazil and in 1915 she gave her first American performance at the Aeolian Hall in New York, her last performance in this city took place in 1972 at Hunter College. In 1967 on the invitation of Queen Elizabeth II she gave concert at Queen Elizabeth Hall in London. She also performed as a chamber musician with violinists such as Jacques Thibaud or George Enescu, as well as with her husband Octavio Pinto, a pianist and composer. She played concertos by Mozart, Beethoven, Chopin, Schumann, Saint-Saëns, Grieg, de Falla or Villa-Lobos conducted by such conductors as Willem Mengelberg, Otto Klemperer, Fritz Reiner, George Szell, Ionel Perlea, André Cluytens and Leonard Bernstein. She was often compared to such renowned pianists as Ignacy Jan Paderewski or Józef Hoffman. The emotional and lively interpretations, extensive dynamics, beautiful sound reached due to the perfect use of the pedal, ideal legato or her left hand conjuring an extraordinary singing line are only a few of Guiomar Noväes’ technical skills which made her a world-famous pianist. A large number of her recordings were preserved on Duo-Art and Welte-Mignon piano rolls (1919-1923) as well as on RCA Victor, Brunswick, Columbia and Vox records. The latest recordings were made for Fermata Company in Brazil.

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