President Obama's statement about the death of Van Cliburn

Van Cliburn

Credit: Getty Images

President Barack Obama congratulates musician Van Cliburn after presenting him with the 2010 National Medal of Arts during a ceremony in the East Room of the White House on March 2, 2011. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

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The White House

Posted on March 3, 2013 at 2:04 PM

Updated Sunday, Mar 3 at 2:06 PM

The White House on Sunday issued this statement from President Obama on the death of Van Cliburn:


This week, we mark the passing of Van Cliburn, one of the most talented pianists of the last century and a musical artist of rare distinction. At the young age of 23, Mr. Cliburn swept the world off its feet with his winning performance at the first International Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow, and he quickly became a beloved ambassador of American culture around the world – especially in the former Soviet Union. His music transcended the challenges of international politics and contributed to an unlikely thaw in Cold War relations. He was truly a man of his moment. Like every President since Harry Truman, I enjoyed the privilege of hearing Mr. Cliburn play, and I am confident that the enduring beauty of his art will sustain his legendary status for years to come. Michelle and I send our thoughts and prayers to Mr. Cliburn’s loved ones.


 

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