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Van Cliburn 63 Years Ago

April 20, 2021

In 1958 Van Cliburn burst a crack in the Iron Curtain. Though the first International Tchaikovsky Competition in 1958 was an event designed to demonstrate Soviet cultural superiority, a 23 year old American, Van Cliburn, won the contest. This Soviet video of the event could not hide the love for this American whose piano virtuosity claimed the day. Notice the woman in the audience wiping a tear at the end of Cliburn’s impromptu playing of his version of “Moscow Nights.”

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