The late Patric Standford may have written these short pieces deliberately to provoke our feedback. If so, his success is reflected in the rich range of readers' comments appearing at the foot of most of the pages.
Indian Parsi conductor Zubin Mehta was born in Bombay on 29 April 1936. His violinist father Mehli Mehta was the founding conductor of the Bombay Symphony Orchestra, and his brother Zarin Mehta is president and executive director of the New York Philharmonic Orchestra.
Zubin Mehta studied piano with Joseph de Lima, whilst still at school, and after initial plans to study medicine, he became a student of Hans Swarowsky in Vienna, alongside Claudio Abbado and Daniel Barenboim.
He made his conducting debut in Vienna in 1958, and won the Liverpool International Conducting Competition during the same year, becoming assistant conductor of the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra. From 1960 until 1967 he was music director of the Montreal Symphony Orchestra, from 1962 until 1978, music director of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and from 1978 until 1991, music director and principal conductor of the New York Philharmonic. From 1998 until 2006 he was music director of the Bavarian State Opera. Since 1985 he has been chief conductor of the Teatro del Maggio Musicale Fiorentino.
Zubin Mehta is a permanent resident of the USA, but retains his Indian citizenship.
Ensemble. Star Wars - Giuseppe Pennisi recommends listening to but not watching Maggio Musicale Fiorentino's production of Verdi's 'La forza del destino'
Ensemble. Easter Concerts - Giuseppe Pennisi experiences two recent performances broadcast on Italian TV
Ensemble. Zubin's Otello - Giuseppe Pennisi watches a new Florence production of Verdi's 'Otello' on Italian TV
Ensemble. Visions of Human Suffering - Lyric Verdi, and a great success, but in some ways a 'Don Carlo' of losers at the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino, impresses Giuseppe Pennisi
Ensemble. Les Dissonances - Giuseppe Pennisi reports from Bucharest
Ensemble. Metaphysical Realm - Wagner's 'Tristan und Isolde' impresses Giuseppe Pennisi
Ensemble. Troubles in Florence - Giuseppe Pennisi was at the opening night of the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino
Ensemble. Important Debuts - 'Der Rosenkavalier' at the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino, a festival with a rich programme but a dire financial situation, reviewed by Giuseppe Pennisi
DVD Spotlight. A Striking Performance - Verdi's 'La forza del destino', reviewed by Robert Anderson. '... the gypsy and her confederates do Verdi proud ...'
Ensemble. Nearly Late Romantic - Giuseppe Pennisi was at the opening night of the new production in Florence of Janácek's 'The Makropoulos Case'
Ensemble. Shh ... Out! - Malcolm Miller was at the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra's 75th Anniversary Prom for an audience composition to remember ...
DVD Spotlight. The Heart of Opera - Giuseppe Verdi's 'La forza del destino', reviewed by Maria Nockin. '... a rhythmically alert, exciting performance ...'
Ensemble. An Erotic 'Tannhäuser' in Bollywood - Giuseppe Pennisi has mixed feelings about La Scala's new Wagnerian production
CD Spotlight. Musical Finesse - Songs by Gregg Kallor, recommended by Howard Smith. 'Go to the top of the class.'
Ensemble. A True Dynamo - Lawrence Budmen listens to French conductor Ludovic Morlot, in concert with Jennifer Koh and the New World Symphony
CD Spotlight. Substantially Admirable - Vocal music by Puccini, reviewed by Howard Smith. '... more than sufficient ... to recommend unstintingly ...'
Irreplaceable to music - Tess Crebbin describes the memorial service in Munich for conductor Marcello Viotti
Ensemble. Devotion and heroism - Ted and Emi Norrish enjoy a musical weekend in Munich