In Chicago, a Maestro and Musician

Oct 01, 2015 380

By David Mermelstein

Riccardo Muti, the renowned Italian conductor now serving as the Chicago Symphony Orchestra's 10th music director, is a man of intense passions. That might be said of most conductors, but particularly strong-willed maestros have dominated podiums here for 125 years.

This is, after all, the city where the imperious Hungarians Fritz Reiner, music director from 1953 to 1962, and Georg Solti, who led the ensemble from 1969 to 1991, secured their reputations. Mr. Muti—who reveres Reiner so much that he wants the orchestra to erect a bust in his honor—is cut from the same cloth, albeit in a different hue.

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