John Mauceri

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John Mauceri
Born (1945-09-12) September 12, 1945 (age 69)

John Francis Mauceri (born September 12, 1945, New York) is an American conductor, producer and arranger for theatre, opera and television. For fifteen years, he served on the faculty of Yale University. He was a protégé of Leonard Bernstein[1] and was a 2000 Berlin Prize Fellow at the American Academy in Berlin.


John Mauceri studied Music Theory and Composition at Yale University where he earned a BA in 1967 and a M Phil Music Theory in 1972. While in New Haven, Mauceri led the Yale Symphony Orchestra from 1968 to 1974. During his tenure with the YSO he conducted the European premiere of Leonard Bernstein's "Mass" in Vienna and the first performance of Charles Ives' "Three Places in New England" in its original large orchestra version. In 1973 Mauceri made both his professional orchestral debut with the Los Angeles Philharmonic and his operatic debut conducting Menotti's "The Saint of Bleecker Street" at the Wolf Trap Festival. Mauceri continued to build upon his operatic career conducting for the Met, New York City Opera, San Francisco Opera, and the Santa Fe Opera. While at San Francisco he conducted the premiere of Imbrie's "Angle of Repose" in 1976. At Washington Opera and La Scala Mauceri had the privilege of conducting the American and European premiere's of Bernstein's "A Quiet Place" in 1984. Alongside his operatic career, Mauceri also developed a reputation as an orchestral conductor with appearances at the National SO, the San Francisco SO, and abroad with the Orchestre National de France, the Israel PO, and the London SO among others. In the musical theatre realm Mauceri has made a name for himself conducting Hal Prince's production of Bernstein's, "Candide" in 1974. He also co-produced the Tony Award winning revival of Rodgers and Hart's musical comedy, "On Your Toes" in 1982. The impetus for this production developing during his time as the consultant for music theatre at the Kennedy Center where he was appointed the music director of its orchestras in 1979. [2]

Mauceri is the first American ever to have held music directorships of opera houses in either the United Kingdom or Italy. He was music director of the Teatro Regio in Turin for three years. From 1987 to 1993, he was music director of Scottish Opera.

His American posts include the music directorship of Pittsburgh Opera from 2000 to 2006. He was principal conductor of the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra from 1991 to 2006. He is the Founding Director of the orchestra. In 2007, he was inducted into the Hollywood Bowl Hall of Fame alongside Plácido Domingo.[3]

In May 2006, the University of North Carolina named Mauceri the seventh Chancellor of the University of North Carolina School of the Arts. He assumed the post on July 1, 2006, and Pittsburgh Opera released Mauceri early from his contract to allow him to take up this post.[4]

Mauceri's commercial recordings include George Gershwin's Strike Up The Band, for Nonesuch. In 2006, Mauceri conducted the Nashville Symphony Orchestra and Chorus in a concert performance of Porgy and Bess that featured cuts and other changes that Gershwin himself had made in the opera during rehearsals leading up to its premiere by the Theatre Guild. This performance was released on CD, the first recording of the opera in this version.[5]

In other media, Mauceri had a small role as the character Claude Maginot in 2002's Grand Theft Auto: Vice City. He appeared briefly as himself in the second episode of the Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip TV series, conducting the fictional "West Coast Philharmonic."

Prior to his current appointment, Mauceri served as the music director of four opera companies: Teatro Regio in Turin, Italy, the Scottish Opera in Glasgow, the Washington Opera at the Kennedy Center and the Pittsburgh Opera. He was also the first music director of the American Symphony Orchestra in Carnegie Hall after its founding director, Leopold Stokowski, with whom he studied. His other mentors included Carlo Maria Giulini and Leonard Bernstein, with whom he worked for eighteen years.

Mauceri is well known throughout the world as the Director of the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra in Los Angeles, which was created for him in 1991 by the Los Angeles Philharmonic Association. At the Hollywood Bowl, he conducted over 300 concerts over 16 seasons. He now has the title of founding director of the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra, and recently returned to the Bowl Orchestra to make his debut at Walt Disney Concert Hall in LA.

Mauceri has conducted most of the world's leading orchestras and opera companies and is one of the world's most accomplished recording artists. He is the recipient of Grammy, Tony, Olivier, Drama Desk, Edison, two Emmy and four Deutsche Schallplatten awards, among other prestigious recognitions.

Mauceri lives in North Carolina and New York City with his wife, Betty. His son, Benjamin, lives in Los Angeles and is VP of Business Affairs for Comedy Central.[6]


Maurice Ravel: Dawn from Daphnis et Chloé, suite No. 2 for orchestra
Edvard Grieg: Morning Mood from Peer Gynt Suite for orchestra
Carl Nielsen: Helios, concert overture, FS 32 (Op. 17)
Claude Debussy: Prélude à l'après-midi d'un faune
Franz Waxman: Dusk
Richard Wagner: Liebestod
Arnold Schoenberg: Sunrise


  1. ^ Robert Croan (13 May 2006). "Opera's music director to lead North Carolina School of the Arts". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Retrieved 2007-10-06. 
  2. ^ Modi, Sorab (1986). The New Grove Dictionary of American Music. Macmillan Press Limited. ISBN 0-943818-36-2. 
  3. ^ Kuo, Daniel (July 1, 2007). "Music Legends Honored with Style at the Hollywood Bowl's Opening Night". Canyon News. Retrieved 2009-08-12. 
  4. ^ Mark Kanny (13 May 2006). "Pittsburgh Opera music director to resign". Pittsburgh Tribune Review. Retrieved 2007-10-06. 
  5. ^ Mark Kanny (13 May 2006). "Pittsburgh Opera stronger for Mauceri's leadership". Pittsburgh Tribune Review. Retrieved 2007-10-06. 
  6. ^ THR Staff (2 Nov 2011). "Next Gen 2011 - Hollywood's Fastest-Rising Stars". Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2013-05-05. 
  7. ^ "John Mauceri" allmusic

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Alexander Gibson
Music Director, Scottish Opera
Succeeded by
Richard Armstrong
Preceded by
(not known)
Music Director, Pittsburgh Opera
Succeeded by
Antony Walker
Preceded by
Principal Conductor, Hollywood Bowl Orchestra
Succeeded by
none yet named