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World-renowned conductor Claudio Abbado dies

Appointed Senator for life for contributions to Italian culture

20 January, 11:24
World-renowned conductor Claudio Abbado dies (ANSA) - Rome, January 20 - World-renowned musical conductor Claudio Abbado, recently appointed to the Senate, died Monday in Bologna, his family reported. Abbado was appointed a Senator for life in August 2013, a position honouring Italians who have shown extraordinary scientific, social or artistic merit, but there had been concerns recently about his health.

Abbado, 80, had conducted many of the world's leading orchestras over a long career. He had served as music director at the La Scala opera house in Milan, principal conductor of the London Symphony Orchestra, music director of the Vienna State Opera, principal guest conductor of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and, from 1989 to 2002, principal conductor of the Berlin Philharmonic.

Awards and honors received by Abbado included two Grammy awards and four honorary doctorates, and in April 2012, he was voted into the Gramaphone Hall of Fame.

Abbado had also taken an active role in promoting young musical talent by founding new orchestras, like the European Youth Orchestra, the Chamber Orchestra of Europe, the Mahler Chamber Orchestra and the Mozart Orchestra.