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Virtuoso Violinist Ruggiero Ricci Dies at 94

on Aug 08, 2012 04:28 PM EDT

American virtuoso violinist Ruggiero Ricci died Monday of heart failure at the age of 94.

The former child prodigy who turned into one of the world's greatest violin virtuosos was also known as the "Paganini of the 20th century".

Born in San Francisco in 1918, he began studying the violin at age six with Louis Persinger, who also taught legendary violinist Yehudi Menuhin.

Ricci was widely known for his performances of music by Niccolo Paganini. In 1947, he became the first violinist to record all 24 Paganini Caprices.

At the peak of his career, he gave over 6000 concerts in 65 countries. Ricci continued playing and teaching toward the end of his life.

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