Indian-born violinist, conductor and teacher Mehli Mehta was born in Bombay on 25 September 1908 to Parsi parents. He studied in Bombay and London, founded the Bombay Symphony Orchestra in 1935, which he led for ten years and later conducted, and also founded the Bombay String Quartet in 1940. He was known for his passion, dedication, inspiration and intensity.
He moved to the USA in 1945, where he studied violin in New York and then directed the orchestra department at UCLA. He was leader of the Hallé Orchestra in Manchester, UK, for five years, acknowledging Barbirolli as one of the greatest influences on his own conducting. He also played and toured with the Curtis Quartet of Philedelphia.
His sons are the conductor Zubin Mehta (whose first teacher was his father), and Zarin Mehta, who was Executive Director of the New York Philharmonic from 2000 until 2012.
Mehli Mehta died in the USA on 19 October 2002, aged ninety-four.