|The American conductor
Jorge Mester was born in Mexico City in 1935 to parents who had
emigrated from Hungary. He studied conducting with Jean Morel at The
Juilliard School in New York, also working with Leonard Bernstein at
the Berkshire Music Center, and with Albert Wolff. In 1955 he made his
debut conducting the National Symphony Orchestra of Mexico. His opera
debut was with Salome in 1960
at the Spoleto Festival in Italy. Since then he has conducted many of
the world's leading ensembles, including the Boston Symphony, the
Detroit Symphony, and the Royal Philharmonic orchestras.
In 1967 he became music director of the Louisville Orchestra, noted for its advocacy of new and neglected music. With this orchestra Mester made more than seventy first recordings of works by such composers as Bruch, Cowell, Crumb, Dallapiccola, Ginastera, Granados, Koechlin, Penderecki, Petrassi, Schuller, and Shostakovich. From 1969 to 1990 he was music director of the Aspen Festival and later became its conductor laureate. Mester was appointed music director of the Pasadena Symphony Orchestra in 1983, and in 1998 he added to that post the music directorship of the Mexico City Philharmonic Orchestra.
A noted teacher, he was on the faculty of The Juilliard School for most of the period between 1958 and 1988.
-- Names which are links refere to my interviews elsewhere on this website. BD
To read my Interview with Norman Dello Joio, click HERE.
To read my Interview with Peter Schickele, click HERE.
To read my Interview with Vincent Persichetti, click HERE.
To read my Interviews with Leonard Slatkin, click HERE.
To read my Interview with Antal Dorati, click HERE.
To read my Interview with Janos Starker, click HERE.
To read my Interview with György Ránki, click HERE.
To read my Interview with Earl Wild, click HERE.
To read my Interview with Hugo Weisgall, click HERE,
To read my Interview with Gerard Schwarz, click HERE.
To read my Interview with Phyllis Bryn-Julson, click HERE.
To read my Interview with Hunter Johnson, click HERE.
This interview was recorded in a conference room at O’Hare
Airport on July 14, 1994. Portions (along with recordings) were
broadcast on WNIB the following year and in 2000. The
transcription was made and posted on this website early in
2009. More photos and links were added at the end of 2015.
To see a full list (with links) of interviews which have been transcribed and posted on this website, click here.
Award-winning broadcaster Bruce Duffie was with WNIB, Classical 97 in Chicago from 1975 until its final moment as a classical station in February of 2001. His interviews have also appeared in various magazines and journals since 1980, and he now continues his broadcast series on WNUR-FM, as well as on Contemporary Classical Internet Radio.You are invited to visit his website for more information about his work, including selected transcripts of other interviews, plus a full list of his guests. He would also like to call your attention to the photos and information about his grandfather, who was a pioneer in the automotive field more than a century ago. You may also send him E-Mail with comments, questions and suggestions.