Introducing: Villa-Lobos Symphonies and String Quartets

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

When you hear the name Heitor Villa-Lobos (1887-1959), you might think of his evocative Chôros or Bachianas brasileiras.

Or maybe the colorful textures and dynamic rhythms of his native Brazil, or his descriptive titles, such as Distribution of Flowers, The Martyrdom of Insects, or The Dance of the White Indian.

What might not come to mind immediately, nor to the ear, are the masterful explorations in traditional European idioms that traced his entire creative life. This week on Q2, discover his 12 symphonies and 17 string quartets from two recent box sets.

Check out some excerpts below or listen to Q2 now.

Villa-Lobos String QuartetsString Quartet No. 5 (excerpt)
Cuarteto Latinoamericano

Villa-Lobos SymphoniesSymphony No. 12 (excerpt)
Radio Symphony Orchestra of Stuttgart with conductor Carl St. Clair

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Comments [3]

Jordan R. from Rio de Janeiro

Villa-Lobos was a genius whose talent is underappreciated, simply because he was a Brazilian. Also, his music merits being interpreted by native Brazilians, not just foreigners, because they feel his rhythms and tones much more.

Jan. 10 2010 10:40 AM
Cleuton from Brazil

Villa-Lobos was not a wild composer. He was like composer with a strong sense of native inspiration.

Jan. 07 2010 07:23 PM
D. Brenner from South-West Connecticut

It is so wonderful that the station is hosting this wildly eclectic composer and it reminded me how much I love this digital radio station. Always mid-to-high quality recordings and internet stream. Also never plays music that is obnoxiously dynamic in volume. Best study environment available : )

Jan. 05 2010 06:58 PM

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Q2 Music is WQXR’s multiplatform home for musical discovery and dynamic new classical music from trailblazing composers, ensembles and leading New York new-music venues. Q2 Music's 24/7 stream lives online at and is accessible via the free WQXR app.


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