Chicago Symphony Orchestra Names Riccardo Muti Music Director Emeritus

By Francisco Salazar
(credit: Todd Rosenberg Photography)

The Chicago Symphony Orchestra has named Riccardo Muti Music Director Emeritus for Life beginning with the 2023-4 season.

The new artistic title was announced during an onstage ceremony June 23 at Orchestra Hall, after the first of three concerts of Beethoven’s “Missa solemnis,” which will mark his final subscription program as Music Director.

Muti took up his post in 2010-11 and is stepping down this summer after 13 seasons.

In a statement, Muti said, “I am honored to stay with the musicians of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra as their Music Director Emeritus for Life. Our artistic collaboration has been one of the great joys of my life and created deep bonds of friendship across my years in Chicago. I look forward to returning regularly to share great music with audiences in the city and on tour.”

CSOA President Jeff Alexander added, “Riccardo Muti has conducted the Orchestra in transformative performances in Chicago, across the country and around the world, creating musical experiences for audiences who will be forever changed. We are delighted that he has accepted our invitation to continue leading CSO concerts and maintaining artistic continuity and excellence for the musicians during this new chapter for the Orchestra.”

Muti will assume his new role in September and conduct two weeks of concerts in Chicago to open the CSO’s 133rd season, followed by two performances in New York’s Carnegie Hall which launches its season on Oct. 4-5. Additionally, Muti will lead the CSO on a three-week European tour, its first such event since 2020; performances already have been announced for venues in Belgium, France, Germany, Luxembourg, Austria, and Italy.