New York Phil to Lorin Maazel: We’re sorry

The latter part of Lorin Maazel’s decade as music director in New York was unhappy. Some of the players and several critics found his performances slick; the conductor’s face set in a rictus of resentment.

Tonight, the orchestra expressed regrets at his death.

 

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NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC STATEMENT

The New York Philharmonic mourns the passing of Lorin Maazel, Music Director of the New York Philharmonic from 2002 to 2009. The Philharmonic will dedicate its free concert in Central Park on Monday, July 14 to Maestro Maazel, performing Barber’s Adagio for Strings, conducted by Music Director Alan Gilbert, in honor of the late conductor, composer, violinist, and friend of the Philharmonic. Our thoughts are with Lorin Maazel’s family and friends at this time.

“I am deeply saddened and shocked by the news of Lorin Maazel’s death,” said New York Philharmonic Music Director Alan Gilbert. “For decades he was a major force in the musical world, and truly an inspiration for generations of American musicians. Personally, I am grateful to him, not only for the brilliant state of the Orchestra that I inherited from him, but for the support and encouragement he extended to me when I took over his responsibilities. All of us in the New York Philharmonic family send our love and sympathy to his family.”

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  • I’m sorry, but I don’t see how this statement is in any way the expression of regret that you describe in your framing of it. It strikes me as a thoughtful and proper tribute to a former colleague, nothing more or less.

  • No matter how you feel about the artistic or leadership qualities of Mr. Maazel, he was a giant in the conducting and orchestral performing world.

  • Sitting in Fisher Hall’s 3rd tier center in 2002, I told my wife that if I had my violin I could follow Maazel’s stick from there. His music-making could be capricious but there’s no denying his gifts.

    I used to tell my Cleveland Orchestra violin friends who complained about his succession to Szell that they sounded better with Maazel. They won a Grammy for Prokofiev’s complete Romeo and Juliet during his first year as M.D.

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