Nicanor Zabaleta - Harp
For many years Zabaleta was the only harpist able to give a satisfactory recital. He was no innovator, and didn't start any trend: the harp recital was born and died with him. Of course, it could be revived by someone else, but it was and will always remain an exception to the rule that says: the harp is marvelous in an orchestral score, but pathetic on its own. Nicanor Zabaleta did with the harp what Segovia had done with the guitar: he tried to retrieve the retrievable from the harp repertory of the past, transcribe the transcribable from the harpsichord and violin repertory, and asked contemporary composers to write for the harp. Born in 1907, zabaleta grew up when the cultural trend called "neoclassicism" was in full bloom, with instrumental virtuosity viewed with suspicion and held, in essence, to be mere showing off. Zabaleta's choice of repertory stopped at the Classical era, jumped right over Romanticism, and began again from impressionism.