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Posted by on Apr 27, 2007 in Arts & Entertainment | 2 comments

Rostropovich: ‘Magnificent Maestro’ Passes Away

(Photo courtesy Pierre Verdy — AFP/Getty Images)

The celebrated Russian cellist and conductor Mstislav Rostropovich, affectionately known as “Slava”, has died at the age of 80, reports BBC.

James Jolly, editor-in-chief of Gramophone magazine, looks back at his musical legacy. “With the death of Mstislav Rostropovich, the musical world has lost not just one of its greatest interpreters but also one of the greatest muses of the 20th Century.

“As a cellist, he was responsible for the creation of hundreds of new works, many from some of the greatest composers of the day.

“Prokofiev, Shostakovich, Britten, Lutoslawski and Penderecki all wrote concertos or concertante works for him, and hundreds of lesser composers were the beneficiaries of his boundless enthusiasm for new music.”

To read Mstislav Rostropovich’s (March 27, 1927 – April 27, 2007), obituary please click here… “Rostropovich was regarded as the greatest cellist since Pablo Casals. He was born in 1927 in Baku, by the Caspian Sea, with music in his blood. His mother was a pianist and his father a cellist, pianist and composer.”

In a moving homage The Washington Post says: “The life force that was Rostropovich ceased exactly one month after his 80th birthday. On a day of mourning for all those who love music, the grief is felt acutely in Washington, where the exiled Rostropovich was the music director of the National Symphony Orchestra from 1977 to 1994…

“He was a shameless, irrepressible flirt, and a connoisseur of fine food and drink, a man who gulped vodka in much the same way — and with much the same enthusiasm — that a professional athlete might gulp Gatorade. He was good copy for anybody who wanted to write about him: Time Magazine put Rostropovich on its cover (30 years ago), calling him “The Magnificent Maestro.” Click here to read the Time article…

For more please click here… And here…