When Lorin Maazel relinquished his role as the New York Philharmonic’s music director in 2009, retirement might have been on the cards for the 80-year-old. Not so, however, as the Munich Philharmonic has announced his appointment as its chief conductor from the 2012-2013 season.
Maazel succeeds Christian Thielemann, who steps down at the conclusion of the 2011-12 season to take over the Dresden Staatskapelle. The orchestra welcomes him on its website as “one of the world’s best conductors” and a “trusted” cultural leader for the city of Munich, where he was music director of the Bavarian Radio Symphony for nine successful years (1993-2002).
“I consider the music directorship of the Munich Philharmonic to be one of the most prestigious positions today in the world of classical music," said Maazel in a statement on his Facebook page. “The quality of the orchestra is superlative and its remarkable history of collaboration with the finest of interpreters such as Maestro Celibidache represents a challenge I shall attempt to meet.”