Miguel Angel Estrella (Argentine pianist)

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Dates: 1972 - 1977

Region: South America

Subject: Political/Economic/Social Opinion

Medium: Music


Artist: Miguel Angel Estrella (b. 1940)

Confronting Bodies: Argentine and Uruguayan governments

Dates of Action: 1972-1977

Location: Argentina, Uruguay

Description of Artwork: Estrella is a pianist known for his interpretations of great classical composers like Beethoven and Brahms.

The Incident: Estrella was an acclaimed Argentine pianist who gave up playing in great concert halls to perform at sugar mills. He denounced Argentina's military governments and played for labor unions. When Peron died in 1972 Estrella was banned from playing concerts for workers. He moved to Uruguay in 1977 where he played live and radio broadcast concerts. He was abducted by Uruguayan secret police, tortured and imprisoned for four-and-a-half years for "subversive association" and "offences against the constitution."

Results of Incident: Estrella was released from prison after recieving broad international support. He was deported to Paris where he healed from his wounds, inflicted by the interrogators, and continued to perform for trade union groups.

Source: Censorship, A World Encyclopedia, ed. D. Jones