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Horowitz in Moscow (1986)

Not Rated | | Documentary, Music | TV Movie 20 April 1986
A recording of Horowitz's historic recital in Moscow, including highlights of his return to his native Soviet Union - his first visit in 61 years.


Brian Large

On Disc

at Amazon

2 nominations. See more awards »




Cast overview:
Vladimir Horowitz Vladimir Horowitz ... Maestro
Wanda Toscanini-Horowitz Wanda Toscanini-Horowitz ... Herself (as Wanda Toscanini Horowitz)


A recording of Horowitz's historic recital in Moscow, including highlights of his return to his native Soviet Union - his first visit in 61 years.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Documentary | Music


Not Rated






Release Date:

20 April 1986 (USA) See more »

Filming Locations:

New York City, New York, USA See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


| (DVD)

Sound Mix:



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Did You Know?


The album version of this documentary was a best seller for a whole year and won a Grammy Award as Best Classical Album in 1988. See more »

Alternate Versions

The DVD does not include any of Charles Kuralt's commentary, and he does not appear at all. The opening scenes, which run longer on the DVD, show the video footage documentary-style, with no commentary. See more »


Featured in CBS News Sunday Morning: With Horowitz in Moscow (1986) See more »


Polonaise in A Flat Op. 53
Frédéric Chopin (as Chopin)
See more »

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User Reviews

Horowitz back in action
10 May 2014 | by Rodrigo_AmaroSee all my reviews

This historical register of the late Vladimir Horowitz performing in his native Russia, after 61 years of absence due to his exile in opposition to Communism, is really something to be seen, felt and above all, heard. The great piano master makes a great return here after dealing some health problems and after an unsuccessful stream of poor performances in the early 1980's due to some memory loss caused by the abuse of medication and drinking. Not only an excellent comeback and a lovely opportunity to visit old friends, but also an important look at the USSR during the then recent glasnost, which allowed Horowitz entrance there, accepted with grace by the crowd, formed by the elite and even common people as well.

Since I'm not a music buff, I can't and won't analyze the master's craft. It's not even fair, since he wasn't the same man who enchanted audiences in earlier decades, though many critics agree that this 1986 presentation can be defined as one of his greatest. But he still carried a powerful presence, all cool, with quick touches, and his rather unusual hand position while playing the piano. The program consisted of Mozart, Scarlatti, Rachmaninoff, Scriabin, Liszt, Schumann and Chopin (highpoint of the concert with his delicate rendition of the Polonaise), some work brilliantly, others sound too weak and confuse. And there's time to see some interviews, in one of them he tells stories of his meetings with Rachmaninoff, back when Vladimir was a child and already a keen player.

Not only the Soviets loved his return, but the world received him with enthusiasm by making of the album version of this performance one of the best sellers at the time, for a whole year, and earning Horowitz a Grammy as Best Classical Album in 1988. "Horowitz in Moscow" is extremely spellbinding and an opportunity to not be missed. 8/10

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