We’re receiving reports of the death of Piero Bellugi, music director of the RAI orchestra from 1967 and, until his death, artistic director of the opera in Palermo, Sicily. He was 87.
Here’s a biography from his website:
Piero Bellugi was born in Florence, Italy, where he received a degree in violin and viola at the National Conservatory “Luigi Cherubini” of Florence. He also studied composition with Luigi Dallapiccola and conducting with Igor Markevitch.
Bellugi then pursued his conducting studies in the USA with Rafael Kubelik and Leonard Bernstein. He was then appointed conductor of the Quad City Symphony Orchestra in Davenport (Iowa), the Oakland Symphony (California) and the Portland Symphony (Oregon).
His European début took place in Milan at La Scala Theater in 1960 where he was enthusiastically received.
Since then Bellugi has been a regular guest of major orchestras conducting concerts and operas in Paris, Berlin, Budapest, Vienna, Brussels, Tel-Aviv, Prague, Madrid, Riga, South Africa, North and South America, Russia, Cuba, Australia, New Zealand and, of course, Italy as well. He has performed with many of the world’s greatest instrumental soloists: Accardo, Ashkenazy, Fournier, Francescatti, Oistrakh, Perahia, Rampal, Rostropovitch, Ricci, Rubinstein, Stern, Szeryng etc. and has accompanied remarkable singers such as Caballé, Christoff, Barbieri, Dorow, Forrester, Freni, Kraus, Ricciarelli, Tebaldi.
His repertory spans from the music of Monteverdi, to that of avant-guard composers, and has premiered many works by composers such as Berio, Bussotti, Milhaud, Messiaen, Nono, Penderecki etc.
He has been permanent conductor of the Italian Radio Orchestra in Turin (RAI), the Toscanini Orchestra of Parma and the Italian Youth Orchestra.
Bellugi has taught Master Classes in conducting at the New England Conservatory in Boston, at the University of California, at the Siena Academy, at the Italian Conservatories of Florence, Rome and Turin.
In this period of his life Bellugi has found, more than ever, an immense satisfaction in passing on his lifetime experience as a conductor and musician to the younger generation of conductors by giving seminars and workshops in interpretation and conducting techniques in many countries.
Bellugi is an honorary member of the National Accademy Santa Cecilia of Rome.
Here’s a rehearsal video: