Chicago Symphony Orchestra
Founded in 1891, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra is consistently hailed as one of the
greatest orchestras in the world. Since 2010, the preeminent conductor Riccardo Muti has
served as its 10th music director. Pierre Boulez is the CSO's Helen Regenstein Conductor
Emeritus, Yo-Yo Ma is its Judson and Joyce Green Creative Consultant, and Mason Bates and
Anna Clyne are its Mead Composers-in-Residence.
From Baroque through contemporary music, the CSO commands a vast repertoire. Its renowned
musicians annually perform more than 150 concerts, most at Symphony Center in Chicago and,
each summer, at the suburban Ravinia Festival. They regularly tour nationally and
internationally. Since 1892, the CSO has made 58 international tours, performing in 29
countries on five continents.
People around the world listen to weekly radio broadcasts of CSO concerts and recordings
on the WFMT network and online at cso.org/radio. Recordings by the CSO have earned 62
Grammy Awards, including two in 2011 for Mr. Muti's recording with the CSO and Chorus of
Verdi's Messa da Requiem (Mr. Muti's first of four releases with the CSO to
The CSO is part of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra Association, which includes the Chicago
Symphony Chorus (Duain Wolfe, Director and Conductor) and the Civic Orchestra of Chicago, a
training ensemble. Through its Symphony Center Presents series, the CSOA presents guest
artists from a variety of genres-classical, jazz, world, and contemporary.
The Negaunee Music Institute at the CSO offers community and education programs that
annually engage more than 200,000 people of diverse ages and backgrounds. Through the
Institute and other activities, including a free annual concert with Mr. Muti and the CSO,
the CSO promotes the concept of Citizen Musicianship™: using the power of music to create
connections and build community.
The CSO is supported by tens of thousands of patrons, volunteers, and institutional and
individual donors. The CSO's music director position is endowed in perpetuity by a generous
gift from the Zell Family Foundation. The Negaunee Foundation provides generous support in
perpetuity for the work of the Negaunee Music Institute. Bank of America is the Global
Sponsor of the CSO.
Born in Naples, Italy, Riccardo Muti is one of the preeminent conductors of our day. When
he became the 10th music director of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra in 2010, Mr. Muti
already had more than 40 years of experience at the helm of Maggio Musicale Fiorentino
(1968-1980), the Philharmonia Orchestra (1972-1982), The Philadelphia Orchestra
(1980-1992), and Teatro alla Scala (1986-2005). He continues to be in demand as a guest
conductor for other orchestras and opera houses around the world.
Since 1971, Mr. Muti has been closely associated with the Salzburg Festival and the Vienna
Philharmonic Orchestra, of which he is an honorary member. When he conducted the
Philharmonic's 150th anniversary concert in 1992, Mr. Muti was presented with the Golden
Ring, a special sign of esteem, and in 2001, his artistic contributions to the orchestra
were further recognized with the Otto Nicolai Gold Medal.
Mr. Muti studied piano at the Conservatory of San Pietro a Majella in Naples, graduating
with distinction. He subsequently received a diploma in composition and conducting from the
Giuseppe Verdi Conservatory in Milan, also graduating with distinction.
Throughout his career, Mr. Muti has demonstrated a strong commitment to training young
musicians. In 2004, he founded the Orchestra Giovanile Luigi Cherubini (Luigi Cherubini
Youth Orchestra), and in 2015, he begins the Riccardo Muti Italian Opera Academy to train
young conductors, répétiteurs, and singers in the Italian opera repertoire.
Since 1997, as part of a project of the Ravenna Festival in Italy titled Le vie
dell'amicizia (The Paths of Friendship), Mr. Muti has annually conducted
large-scale concerts in troubled areas around the world, using music to promote hope and
unity and to bring attention to social, cultural, and humanitarian issues.
Mr. Muti has received numerous honors from Italy, the United States, Germany, Austria,
Great Britain, Israel, Spain, Russia, Sweden, and the Vatican, as well as more than 20
honorary degrees from universities across the globe.
His vast catalog of recordings, numbering in the hundreds, ranges from traditional
symphonic and operatic repertoire to contemporary works. Mr. Muti also has written two
books, Verdi, l'italiano and Riccardo Muti: An Autobiography: First the Music,
Then the Words, both published in several languages.
Please visit riccardomutimusic.com for more information.