Riccardo Muti, music director of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, has three more honors to add to his already voluminous collection of awards.
The Conservatory of San Pietro a Majella, in his hometown of Naples, Italy, has given him the San Pietro a Majella Prize. The conservatory also announced that the foyer of its Scarlatti Hall has renamed as Riccardo Muti Hall, in honor of his status as the conservatory’s most illustrious alumnus. The honor marks the first time that a conservatory room has been named after a living person.
“For me, it all started here,” Muti said in an interview with the site Campania Su Web. “The fact that my name is linked to the hall of the foyer, where the greatest conductors in the world have passed, moves me. This place, as one can see through its library, its architecture and its history, belongs not only to Naples, but to the whole world, to humanity and the history of culture.”
Meanwhile, the Società Italia Argentina has honored Muti with its Gold Medal Prize for Italian Culture in Argentina for “having spread in Argentina, personally and with all his work, the excellence of Italian culture, contributing to the improvement in the relations between the two peoples and nations.”
Later this month, Muti will return to Symphony Center for two weeks of programs that continue this season’s cycle of Schubert works. The first week’s program on March 20-22 features Schubert’s Symphony No. 9 (Great) and pianist Mitsuko Uchida as the soloist in Schumann’s Piano Concerto. On March 27-29, Muti will lead the CSO in Schubert’s Symphonies No. 2 and 8 (Unfinished). CSO Principal Cello John Sharp will be the soloist in Elgar’s Cello Concerto. An Afterwork Masterworks program on March 26 features just the Elgar concerto and the Unfinished symphony. A Q&A session with Muti and Sharp will follow that concert.