Chicago Symphony mourns Solti veteran

Francis Akos joined the violin section under Fritz Reiner in 1955 and played on for 48 years. A Holocaust survivor from Budapest, he was one of the Solti favourites who knew what the conductor wanted before he knew it himself.

In 1959, Francis was named assistant concertmaster, holding the title until 1997.

He died this week at 93 after a short illness.



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  • I played chamber music with him when I was young and soloed under his baton with his orchestra. He loved his craft and and was a favorite friend of many Hungarians including the great cellist Janos Starker. His cool, detached gaze out toward the audience was something to witness. The 1970s CSO, under Solti, was the greatest orchestra I ever heard.

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