Riccardo Muti honored with new CSO title

Fri Jun 23, 2023 at 11:14 pm

By Lawrence A. Johnson

As CSO president Jeff Alexander applauds, Riccardo Muti holds up the proclamation naming him CSO Music Director Emeritus for Life following Friday night’s performance of Beethoven’s Missa Solemnis. Photo: Todd Rosenberg

Riccardo Muti was named Music Director Emeritus for Life by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra at an onstage ceremony following Friday night’s performance of Beethoven’s Missa Solemnis.

This weekend’s concerts mark the conclusion of the Italian conductor’s 13-year tenure as music director of the CSO.

Muti, 81, was presented with a large framed copy of the proclamation by CSO president Jeff Alexander and board chair Mary Louise Gorno. The new title was bestowed in recognition of his artistic achievements with the CSO.

In relaxed good humor, Muti cracked some jokes and accepted the award, thanking the musicians for their close partnership and friendship over the past decade-plus.

While the new title, effective September 1, is honorary in nature, it indicates that Muti will continue to have a relationship with the orchestra and return to conduct every year as the CSO searches for a successor.

Muti will lead two weeks of Chicago concerts in the 2023-24 season. He and the CSO will open Carnegie Hall’s season in October and Muti will take the orchestra on a three-week European tour in January.

In 2024-25, Muti is slated to conduct four weeks of concerts in Chicago and two weeks on tour.

Photo: Todd Rosenberg

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One Response to “Riccardo Muti honored with new CSO title”

  1. Posted Jun 24, 2023 at 10:02 am by Brad

    Muti isn’t exactly the deferential type, so whoever becomes music director will have to be comfortable with his ongoing presence.

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