Ruggiero Ricci was born in San Francisco in 1918, four years after Yehudi Menuhin was born there. He later thanked Menuhin for starting the craze for child prodigies. Ricci performed the Mendelssohn Concerto in public at the age of 11. His spectacular skills were shown in the Paganini Caprices, but he resisted being tagged, He said, "A specialist is somebody who plays all the other types of music worse."
On this week's Classics of the Phonograph, Saturday at 11 am on WILL-FM, his discs will display his talents.
Ruggiero Ricci playlist:
Paganini: Violin Concerto No. 2, "La Campanella," Cincinnatti S.O., Max Rudolph
Paganini: Variations on Paisiello's "Nel cor non mi sento"
Khachaturian: Violin Concerto, Finale," London Philharmonic, Anatole Fistoulari
Kreisler: Caprice Viennois, Brooks Smith, piano