CD Spotlight. A Very Joyous Disc - Brahms arranged by Kenneth Woods impresses Alice McVeigh. '... this is an excellent performance representing a useful, joyful and even inspired addition to the orchestral repertoire.'
(Previous sponsored features returning soon.)
Italian conductor Claudio Abbado was born in Milan on 26 June 1933 into a musical family. He studied composition, conducting and piano at the Conservatorio di musica 'Giuseppe Verdi' di Milano and then conducting with Hans Swarowsky at Vienna's Imperial Academy of Music and the Performing Arts.
He won the 1958 Koussevitsky Competition at Tanglewood and the Mitropoulos Prize in 1963.
From 1968 until 1986 he was music director at La Scala, where he presented a contemporary opera each year and increased accessibility to the working class. He founded the Filarmonica della Scala for performing orchestral repertoire.
In 1971 he became principal conductor of the Vienna Philharmonic and was music director and conductor of Vienna State Opera from 1986 until 1991. He also worked as principal conductor of the London Symphony Orchestra and as principal guest conductor of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra.
After recovering from stomach cancer (diagnosed in 2000), he formed the Lucerne Festival Orchestra and was music director of Orchestra Mozart in Bologna.
He died in Bologna on 20 January 2014, aged eighty.
(Features listed in grey are in our archive, and available to subscribers only.)