A Popular Boy
How it All Began
At five, Victor already demonstrated a love for great music. His father would take him to concerts at the grand Theatro Municipal in Rio to witness celebrated Maestro Arturo Toscanini in action. With his aunt Elza, he began taking piano and voice lessons, which he would further develop with renowned teachers later in life. At nine years of age, he would attend piano recitals and operas. When Victor was 11, he read several volumes of the censored Green Collection of erotic romance novels, a discovery that revolutionized his future: writing was pleasure. It was then that Victor produced his first short story, Os três suspiros de Helena (Helena’s Three Sighs).A Love of Images
His childhood love of movies would persist throughout his adult life, with a special affection for classical European cinema: Visconti, Fellini, Monicelli’s first films, films by Totò, Carné, Clouzot, British comedies of the 40’s and 50’s, and the nobility of Sir Lawrence Olivier at the forefront of Shakespearian adaptations such as Richard III. American movies, in turn, were capable of awakening conflicting emotions in him. While admiring the efficiency and credibility of their stories, he loathed the clichés and superficiality with which they addressed the topics. Films by Orson Welles and great musicals like The Wizard of Oz, Singing in the Rain and an American in Paris were above all restrictions. With regard to Brazilian films, Victor would frequently become annoyed at signs of the amateurism that prevailed up to the end of the 70’s.The Multi-Faceted Man
An employee of Banco do Brasil for over 20 years, Victor took pleasure in transforming the jargon and real-life absurdities of everyday bureaucracy into fiction with a definite Kafkian flavor to it. O Arquivo (The File Cabinet), his first short story, which became a Brazilian classic, published in eight other countries, tells of a man who "progresses" within his company while his salary is progressively reduced and he himself is gradually converted into an object. In the austere environment of Banco do Brasil, to the consternation of the bank’s hierarchy and the delight of his colleagues, Victor had an irresistible tendency to satirize routine, toss all formality out the window and disregard the imperatives of the myth of that time: a good career in Banco do Brasil. Bureaucratic forms served as inspiration for poetic interventions and the daily routine gave way to comic situations.Flight to Bayreuth
Following his retirement in 1986, Victor resumed his career teaching literary theory and creation, which had been interrupted a decade earlier. The 90’s were some of the most productive years in his career: in addition to giving classes, he published two books, wrote the greater part of two others - the novel Do catálogo de flores (The Flower Catalog) and a volume on theory of meaning entitled O que significa isto? (What does This Mean?) -, inspired admiration and respect as a classical music critic for Jornal do Brasil, gave courses on opera and symphonic music, literary workshops and conferences in various parts of the country and in Colombia, and was also consultant to the Centro Cultural Banco do Brasil for its opera video programming.