Thousands of people gathered outside Milan’s La Scala opera house to pay tribute to opera conductor Claudio Abbado.
Abbado, who died on January 20 aged 80 after a long illness was regarded as one of the world’s greatest ever conductors.
La Scala Philharmonic orchestra played the ‘Funeral March movement’ from Beethoven’s ‘Third Symphony’ to an empty theatre while the gathered crowd in Piazza della Scala listened to the concert via loudspeaker.
Watch the video
Claudio Abbado, born on the 26th of June 1933, was an Italian conductor. He served as music director of the La Scala opera house in Milan, principal conductor of the London Symphony Orchestra, principal guest conductor of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, music director of the Vienna State Opera, and principal conductor of the Berlin Philharmonic orchestra.
He was made a Senator for life in the Senate of Italy in 2013.
Abbado received many awards and recognitions including the Grand cross of the Légion d’honneur, the Imperial Prize of Japan as well as honorary doctorates from the universities of Ferrara, Cambridge, Aberdeen and Havana.
In 1973, Abbado won the Mozart Medal awarded by Mozartgemeinde Wien and the Ernst von Siemens Music Prize in 1994.
Abbado received the 1997 Grammy Award in the Best Small Ensemble Performance (with or without conductor) category for “Hindemith:Kammermusik No. 1 With Finale 1921, Op. 24 No. 1” and the 2005 Grammy Award in the Best Instrumental Soloist(s) Performance (with Orchestra) category for “Beethoven: Piano Concertos Nos. 2 & 3” performed by Martha Argerich.
In April 2012, Abbado was voted into the Gramophone Hall of Fame and in May of the same year, he was awarded the conductor prize at the Royal Philharmonic Society Music Awards.