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The Pope’s last conductor laments his abdication

Zubin  Mehta and the Orchestra of Maggio Musicale performed Monday February 4th in the Vatican City for His Holiness, Pope Benedict XVI and for the President of the Italian Republic Giorgio Napolitano. Today, Zubin issued this statement:


I had already met the Pope during my years in Munich, and for this reason it was a great honor for me to conduct for His Holiness last Monday Beethoven’s Eroica Symphony and Verdi’s Ouverture to La Forza del Destino.  We were all enchanted by the splendid speech given by the Holy Father after the concert, words that expressed his great love and profound knowledge of Beethoven and Verdi.  His achievements will remain in history; the peace and kindness that he carried on his world travels will remain in future memories.  I renew my promise to perform for him whenever he should desire and I hope that now, having more time, he will have the possibility to visit the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino to enjoy our music. ”


Zubin Mehta

Principal Conductor of the Orchestra of Maggio Musicale Fiorentino


MMF concerto per Benedetto  XVI       MMF concerto per Benedetto  XVI

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  1. Thomas Notini says:

    The Pope is known to be a dedicated lover of Mozart’s music and also a pretty good “Hausmusik” piano player.

  2. Petros Linardos says:

    This is a very gracious statement. I don’t read any lament on the Pope’s abdication. Am I failing to read between the lines?

    I have great respect for those who know when it’s time to step down gracefully. Alfred Brendel comes to my mind as a good recent example in music.

  3. The Pope is just too old to continue with his work. Knowing when to step down is the mark of good leader.

    • The Pope was too old when he was appointed.

      Perhaps now we can have someone who is younger & a modernis – and not such a hypocrite (Protecting Paedophile Priests for years before he got the job).

      • You mean like those running our music schools?

        • Yes. At least those in the Music schools are now being procecuted! Before he was made Pope Benedict was in charge of the department responsible for hiding & protecting priests from being prosecuted for child abuse for well over 20 years & hiding them in the Vatican.

          He kept quiet about this & only started doing something ethical when it became public knowledge.

          He should not have been allowed to retire. As soon as it became public knowledge he should have been sacked.

          He has brought shame on the Catholic church, so good riddance to the geriatric old hypocrite.

  4. There is nothing more exciting than a bit of papal intrigue, and the higher the turnover of the capo de capo, the greater the profits for London’s bookmakers predicting who will be the next one.

    The Guardian has focused on the coverup of priest pedophilia (see for example, Others question his past re: the Nazis, while still others point to the Church’s move toward stricter orthodoxy and theocratic discipline, especially with the Catholic nuns in America seeking a more liberal approach toward homosexuality and the ordination of women priests. At the same time, Pope Benedict did issue a very important encyclical directed at lifting up the poor, and also called for a Palestinian state whereby the Palestinians and Israelis could live side by side in peace.

    However, there is also always the Vatican Bank lurking in the background with its alleged history of money laundering, Mafia involvement, and the fact that everyone who might be involved will have his day and then see it end. (While this part is less widely reported, it would not be surprising if the bookies have been having a field day with it.)

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