Friday, June 5, 2009

Silvio Barbato

I was saddened to hear of the death of Brazilian conductor Silvio Barbato, who was aboard the Air France 447 flight which went down in the Atlantic earlier this week. A pupil of Claudio Santoro, Barbato conducted Santoro's Statues of Man at the 1990 re-opening of the Manaus Opera House. He was best known as the Musical Director of the Teatro Municipal in Rio de Janeiro.

Barbato was referred to as a Villa-Lobos champion in this sympathetic obituary in the Telegraph. He was music director for Zelito Vianna's 2000 film Villa-Lobos: Uma Vida de Paixão. The only Villa-Lobos recording I know of that Barbato conducted (besides the film soundtrack) is the 2006 Violão Sinfônico disc with Turibio Santos, which includes Villa's Introdução aos Choros.

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