Zubin Mehta conducts Israel Philharmonic Orchestra for final time as music director


JERUSALEM (JTA) — Conductor Zubin Mehta conducted the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra for the final time as its musical director.

Mehta, 83, performed with the Orchestra on Sunday evening in Tel Aviv and was honored with an extended standing ovation. Members of the orchestra threw flowers on the conductor and his wife at the end of the concert.

The final performance included Liszt’s Piano Concerto No. 2 and Mahler’s Symphony No. 2.

He will be succeeded by Lahav Shani, 30. Shani and pianist Yefim Bronfman appeared on-stage on Sunday night and performed a duet.

Mehta, who announced in 2016 that he would retire at the end of this season, was named the orchestra’s musical director emeritus. He was named the orchestra’s music advisor in 1969 and its music director in 1977. He became its music director for life in 1981.

He also served as music director of the Los Angeles Philharmonic from 1962 to 1978 and was music director of the New York Philharmonic from 1978 to 1991.

Mehta was born in Bombay, India. His father, Mehli Mehta, was the founder of the Bombay Symphony.

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