Heitor Villa-Lobos Biography

20th century Brazilian composer Heitor Villa-Lobos’s work, including Bachianas brasileiras, brought Brazilian folk motifs to American classical music.


Heitor Villa-Lobos was born on March 5, 1887, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. In the 1920s, he composed Chôros, a series that blended Brazilian folk music with classical music. He developed a U.S. following when, in 1939, his music was played at the New York World’s Fair. From 1930 to 1944, Villa-Lobos worked on his best-known series, Bachianas brasileiras. He died on November 17, 1959, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.


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