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Israel Philharmonic Commences Concert Tour of Poland, Hungary

The Israel Philharmonic Orchestra (IPO) left Thursday on an 11-day tour of Poland and Hungary that its conductor, Zubin Mehta, said he hoped would lead toward the Soviet Union.

The IPO will perform in Warsaw, Krakow and Katowice, culminating in Budapest on November 15. At that concert, and at one the evening before in Warsaw, Itzhak Perlman will be the soloist.

“I see this as a small window which has opened between us and Eastern Europe and I hope it will be a step towards our going to Russia,” Mehta said before leaving.

“I also hope a few consciences in Poland will be pricked when they see what Polish culture would have been like if the Jews were still there.”

The orchestra also will visit Auschwitz, where it will play Israel’s national anthem, “Hatikva.”