will go to the United States only when the Americans wish to receive me as they would a European artist, that is, because of my own qualities and not because of political considerations...".
In spite of his initial resistance (this was the time of the US "Good Neighbor Policy" in relation to its American allies during World War II), he was convinced by maestro Leopold Stokowski and accepted the invitation of the American maestro Werner Janssen to do a tour of the US in 1944.
From that moment on, he returned several times to the US, where he conducted and recorded his works, received awards and commissions for new pieces, and had contact with the greatest people in American music, thus completing the cycle of international acclaim.
Villa-Lobos died of cancer on November 17, 1959 in Rio de Janeiro.
"It was a spectacle. It was something like a strong wind blowing through the forest, ripping off leaves and branches and whipping them around; it then fell over the city and crashed up against windows, to throw them open or shatter them, blowing through the houses, knocking everything down; and when it seemed like the end of the world, it grew gentle, turning into an evening breeze, full of sweetness. Only then did I realize that it was music - it had always been music."
A piece by Carlos Drummond de Andrade
published on the occasion of Villa-Lobos’ death.