One of the most prominent American conductors, Lorin Maazel, died today at his home at Castleton Farms, Va. He was 84. His death was announced by the Castleton Festival, the annual summer series he founded. The festival officially attributed his death to complications stemming from pneumonia; however, the Washington Post reports that Nancy Gustafson, the festival's executive director, said Maazel had been suffering an "unexplained illness following a kind of collapse from fatigue" due to heavy travel and work engagements across Europe, Asia and North America, despite having cancelled several appearances, including performances at Castleton and with the Munich Philharmonic and Boston Symphony Orchestra this spring.
Though born in Paris March 6, 1930, Maazel was a second-generation American who was recognized very early on as a musical prodigy. After beginning violin lessons at age 5 and conducting just two years later, he conducted most of the major American orchestras before he was 15. Yet he did not neglect ...
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