Monday, February 26, 2024

IN MEMORIAM | Conductor Seiji Ozawa Has Died At Age 88

Sesji Ozawa: In 1963 (unknown photographer/Public domain); U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry poses for a photo with 2015 Kennedy Center Honors recipient conductor Seiji Ozawa and his family at the Kennedy Center Honors Dinner at the U.S. Department of State in Washington, D.C., on December 5, 2015. [State Department photo/ Public Domain]
Seiji Ozawa: In 1963 (unknown photographer/Public area); U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry poses for a photograph with 2015 Kennedy Heart Honors recipient conductor Seiji Ozawa and his household on the Kennedy Heart Honors Dinner on the U.S. Division of State in Washington, D.C., on December 5, 2015. [State Department photo/ Public Domain]

Conductor Seiji Ozawa has died on the age of 88. The longtime conductor of the Boston Symphony Orchestra died in Tokyo on February 6 of coronary heart failure, as introduced at present by the Seiji Ozawa Worldwide Academy Switzerland.

Ozawa left his mark on the world of classical music, and got here to be considered one of many preeminent conductors of the twentieth century. He paved the way in which for a lot of Asian artists who adopted him. He additionally left his mark right here in Toronto, one which continues to resonate to the current day.

Maestro Seiji Ozawa

Maestro Ozawa was born on September 1, 1935. He was born in Mukden, China to Japanese mother and father, town being occupied by Japanese forces on the time. Seiji started to review piano on the age of 9.

His father was a dentist who totally supported his son’s musical ambitions. The truth is, the legend goes that he dragged a piano in a wagon for 25 miles so younger Seiji would have one thing to play. A rugby harm as a teen, although, diverted his musical expertise from performing to conducting.

After a prize win on the Worldwide Competitors of Orchestra Conductors in Besançon, France in 1959, he was invited to review in the US by the then music director of the BSO, Charles Munch. Ozawa subsequently studied in Berlin with von Karajan, the place he first got here to the discover of Leonard Bernstein. Bernstein went on to nominate him as assistant conductor of the New York Philharmonic.

In Japan, his trendy and really bodily fashion of his conducting got here beneath fireplace, and he went from the NHK Symphony Orchestra to the Japan Philharmonic within the Sixties attributable to controversy.

Seiji Ozawa: Olivier Messiaen’s Turangalîla with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra:

Ozawa In Toronto

Ozawa grew to become conductor of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra from 1965 to 1969, and considered one of his recordings made throughout that tenure hyperlinks to the TSO at present.

Olivier Messiaen’s Turangalîla was commissioned by the Boston Symphony Orchestra beneath then conductor Serge Koussevitzky in 1946-48.

Ozawa, thought-about one of many foremost conductors of Messiaen’s work, extremely regarded by the composer himself, recorded Turangalîla with the TSO in 1968. The recording gained worldwide acclaim, and was nominated for a GRAMMY® Award.

The work, because it occurs, was additionally first on the listing for present Music Director Gustavo Gimeno, whose personal recording with the TSO was simply launched.

From Toronto, Ozawa made the transfer south to the San Francisco Philharmonic from 1970 to 1977.

He conducts Mahler with the BSO in 1976:

Maestro Ozawa & The BSO

In the midst of that tenure, Seiji arrived in Boston to guide the BSO in 1973 on the age of 38, a daring appointment for the orchestra on the time, and held the place for 29 years. At occasions controversial, he’s acknowledged at present as one of many group’s iconic leaders.

With the BSO, he gained Emmy awards in 1976 and 1994. He was additionally the primary to interrupt the Chinese language ban on Western music with an epic efficiency of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony with the Peking Central Philharmonic.

He was energetic in growing orchestral music and establishments in Japan, and performed Beethoven’s Ode to Pleasure on the opening ceremonies of the 1998 Winter Olympics in Nagano. He was acknowledged by the Japanese authorities with a designation as a Particular person of Cultural Benefit in 2001. His recording of Ravel with the Saito Kinen Orchestra he helped discovered gained a GRAMMY® in 2013.

After Boston, he was the music director of the Vienna State Opera from 2002 till 2010. Ozawa fell ailing in 2010, and curtailed his performing actions within the later years of his life, though he was capable of visitor conduct on the world’s main levels.

In 2004, he created the Seiji Ozawa Worldwide Academy as an establishment dedicated to string quartets, an ensemble he noticed as a constructing block in direction of changing into a whole musician as a string participant. Ozawa was personally concerned within the Academy and its educating.

The Academy can be holding a live performance in his tribute on July 9 in Geneva.

Could the Maestro relaxation in peace.


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