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David Shallon (Conductor)

Born: October 15, 1950 - Tel Aviv, Israel
Died: September 16, 2000 - Tokyo, Japan

The Israeli conductor; David Shallon, he studied violin, viola, horn, composition and conducting with Noam Sheriff. He completed his conducting studies with Hans Swarowsky at the Vienna Academy of Music (1973-1975). Shallon was an assistant to Leonard Bernstein with the New York Philharmonic Orchestra and in Europe (1974-1979).

David Shallon confirmed his talent in 1980 by conducting the Wiener Symphoniker in Gustav Mahler's Third Symphony. The same year he made his debut with Bayerischer Rundfunk Symphonieorchester in Munich with equal success and since then he was a regular guest of major orchestras in Germany. He made his USA debut as a guest conductor with the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra in 1980..His first invitation to the Berliner Philharmoniker was in 1986 and he was asked again several times.

David Shallon went on to make appearances as a guest conductor with major European orchestras and opera houses. He was invited by numerous orchestras in various countries: London Symphony Orchestra, London Philharmonic Orchestra, Orchestre National de France, Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra (Minnesota), Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, WDR Sinfonieorchester Köln, Prague Symphony Orchestra, Berliner Symphoniker, Royal Flanders Philharmonic Orchestra in Antwerp, Orchestra of Galicia, Stavanger, Norrköping, Basel, Berne, of Valencia, and the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra in Glasgow, with the participation of eminent soloists including Radu Lupu, Alicia de Larrocha, András Schiff, Tabea Zimmermann, Heinrich Schiff, Gidon Kremer, Itzhak Perlman, Isaac Stern and Frank Peter Zimmermann. Shallon was also invited by several opera houses: Wiener Staatsoper, Frankfurt Opera, Deutsche Oper am Rhein (Düsseldorf), Netherlands Opera in Amsterdam and New Israeli Opera.

From 1987 to 1993, David Shallon was Generalmusikdirektor of the Düsseldorfer Symphoniker. As Music Director of the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra from 1992 to 2000, he demonstrated the qualities of this orchestra in a major European tour in March 1996. Shallon took office as head of the Orchestre Philharmonique du Luxembourg in September l997. It was officially presented to the Luxembourg public with the Symphony No. 3 by G. Mahler on November 7, 1997 at the Luxembourg Conservatory in a concert organized by the Friends of the Philharmonic Orchestra of Luxembourg. The study was a standing ovation.

David Shallon has always paid great attention to youth. He led several times the Junge Deutsche Philharmonie and the Australian Youth Orchestra he has taken on a tour in Australia, the USA and Germany. He conducted the International Youth Orchestra at the "Winter Classic" Festival in Jerusalem and the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain.

His interest in contemporary music won renown by many "firsts" of works by Leonard Bernstein, Henri Dutilleux, Luciano Berio, Hans Werner Henze, Luigi Nono and Kzysztof Penderecki. In 1980, ShalIon led the premiere of Gottfied von Einem's controversial opera Jesu Hochzeit in Vienna.

His last recordings were made with his wife Tabea Zimmermann, the famous young violist, namely, concertos by Béla Bartók and Paul Hindemith, who obtained the "Deutscher Schallplattenpreis" and the viola concertos by Schnittke and Kopytman (with Orchestra of Jerusalem). Both discs have been released on EMI. For Timpani he made a first recording with Orchestre Philharmonique du Luxembourg with works by Ernst Bloch.

In September 2000, David Shallon was in Japan to conduct the Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra. He was rushed to a hospital after suffering an asthma attack and pronounced dead soon. He was only 49.

Source: Bakerís Biographical Dictionary of 20th Century Classical Musicians (1997); Luxembourg Philharmonic Orchestra Website, English translation by Aryeh Oron (May 2012); Various obituaries
Contributed by
Aryeh Oron (May 2012)

David Shallon: Short Biography | Recordings of Vocal Works

Links to other Sites

Obituary in News Today
David Shallon - Portrait du directeur musical de l'OPL [French]

Conductor makes himself at home (Houston Chronicle Archives) [Sep 1991]

Biographies of Performers: Main Page | A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z
Explanation | Acronyms | Missing Biographies | The Sad Corner


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