Wednesday, February 16, 2011

RIP Sidney Harth - Concertmaster, Conductor, Teacher

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Violinist and conductor SIDNEY HARTH, was universally acclaimed as one of the world's great artists. His prolific career as a performer and educator has earned him countless honors and accolades, and his numerous recordings have made an important contribution to classical discography.
In a stunning musical and political victory, Harth attained international recognition when he became the first American to be awarded the Laureate Prize in Poland's Wieniawshi Violin Competition in 1957 at the height of the Cold War.
Harth's orchestral career was unparalleled. He served as Concertmaster of the New York and Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestras, both under conductor Zubin Mehta, Concertmaster of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra under Fritz Reiner, and Concertmaster of the Louisville Symphony Orchestra under Robert Whitney, where he was also Assistant Conductor. His solo engagements took him to virtually every musical capital in the world, performing with the major symphony orchestras of North America, Europe, Israel, China, South America, and Russia. Harth was a familiar figure at the leading summer music festivals including the Aspen Music Festival, the Banff Music Festival, the Vancouver Summer Festival, the Grands Interprets dans le Valle du Lot in France, and the popular festivals in Santa Barbara, Maine, Alaska, Texas, and Tennessee.
In tandum with his solo engagements, Harth enjoyed a brilliant career as a conductor. His numerous appointments have included the post of Associate Conductor of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Music Director of the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra, the Puerto Rico Symphony Orchestra, and the Northwest Chamber Orchestra of Seattle, and Principal Conductor of the Natal Symphony Orchestra in South Africa. He has served as director of the conducting programs at Mannes College of Music in New York, the University of Texas in Houston, and the Hartt College of Music at the University of Connecticut in Hartford. He served as Director of Orchestral Activities at Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
Sidney Harth's notable academic career was marked by his appointment as the Andrew W. Mellon Permanent Professor of Music at Carnegie Mellon University, where he was also the Music Department Head, and Professor of Violin at Yale University for 17 years.

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