Experience legendary pianist in “The Magic of Horowitz” on GREAT PERFORMANCES – January 22 at 10 pm

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Great Performances Explores  Pianist Vladimir Horowitz in

Great Performances: The Magic of Callas premiering Friday, January 15, 2021 on PBS


This winter, Great Performances shines a spotlight on international musician Vladimir Horowitz premiering Friday, January 22, 2021 at 10 p.m. on PBS, and the PBS Video app. The film is introduced by Peter Gelb, currently General Manager of the Metropolitan Opera, as well as Vladimir Horowitz’s former manager.  More than 60 years since his departure from Russia, legendary pianist Vladimir Horowitz finally made his homecoming return in April 1986 with a concert at the Great Hall of the Tchaikovsky Conservatory in Moscow.

Russian Pianist Vladimir Horowitz
Vladimir Horowitz: The Last Romantic (1985) Documentary
Directed by Albert Maysles, David Maysles
Shown: Vladimir Horowitz

Great Performances: The Magic of Horowitz, premiering Friday, January 22 at 10 p.m. on PBS, delves into the story behind Horowitz’ virtuoso 1986 Moscow concert. The documentary weaves together concert footage, including intimate close-ups of Horowitz’ agile hands interspersed with the emotional audience reactions, historical context and original interviews with Horowitz’ former manager Peter Gelb (Metropolitan Opera) as well as composer Tatjana Komarova, violoncellist Alina Kudelevic and contemporary piano virtuosos Martha Argerich, Daniil Trifonov and Sophie Pacini.

Recent meetings between President Ronald Reagan and Soviet General Secretary Mikhail Gorbachev provided hope that the Cold War was coming to an end, and Horowitz’ return to Russia was seen as a way to help open the door between the two superpowers. The concerts marked the first time in years that one of the world’s leading romantic pianists performed live on stage. Horowitz put together a demanding program featuring works by leading classical composers Scarlatti, Mozart, Rachmaninoff, Scriabin, Schubert, Liszt, and Chopin, selected for their private meaning to him.

Russian Pianist Vladimir Horowitz.
Russian Pianist Vladimir Horowitz.

Great Performances: The Magic of Horowitz spotlights this magnificent and historic performance.

Throughout its more than 40-year history on PBS, Great Performances has provided an unparalleled showcase of the best in all genres of the performing arts, serving as America’s most prestigious and enduring broadcaster of cultural programming. The series is available for streaming simultaneously on all station-branded PBS platforms, including and the PBS Video app, which is available on iOS, Android, Roku, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, and Chromecast. PBS station members can view episodes via Passport (contact your local PBS station for details). Great Performances is produced by THIRTEEN Productions LLC for WNET. John Walker is Senior Producer, Bill O’Donnell is series producer and David Horn is executive producer.