CSO’s Riccardo Muti says he's in good health for the new season

April 10, 2013

(Todd Rosenberg Photography)
File: Riccardo Muti. The CSO music director, now 71, has missed shows due to illness as recently as January.

The Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s Music Director, Riccardo Muti, said he’s back and in good health after a series of absences.

The world-renowned conductor greeted his first season at CSO in 2010 with a long absence due to a gastric illness. Then in 2011, Muti fell during a rehearsal and fractured his jaw; he got a pacemaker shortly after. And Maestro Muti missed shows and rehearsals when he was out with the flu in January. Now he says he’s in the clear.

“I still walk, I move my arms, etc. etc,” the 71-year old Italian joked during a press conference to announce the new season. “The rest, I will not say.”

And he’s looking forward to celebrating composer Giuseppe Verdi’s 200th birthday in October with a live-streamed show.

“Verdi speaks to us about our defects, our merits, our qualities and our mistakes and our sins, without judging,” Muti said.

The CSO will also perform Verdi in a free concert at Cicero’s Morton East High School in September.