Fresh Air’s classical music reviewer Lloyd Schwartz writes about conductor James Levine's “triumphant comeback,” when he took the stage at Carnegie Hall with the MET Opera Orchestra:
An extended ovation greeted conductor James Levine last May when he returned to performing after a two-year absence. In 2011, he resigned as music director of the Boston Symphony Orchestra and cancelled his performances at the Metropolitan Opera. He’d been plagued by health problems, injuries and operations, and it was painful for him to move. Many of his admirers, even he himself, feared he might never conduct again.
But last year, the Met announced that he’d be returning this year to lead three opera productions and several concerts with the Met Orchestra at Carnegie Hall. A special wheelchair had been rigged for him, and although he wasn’t walking, he was evidently pain free and his upper body was strong and flexible. We can hear his exciting return on Live at Carnegie Hall, a new two-CD set of that first Carnegie Hall concert, leading orchestral staples by Wagner, Beethoven and Schubert.
image via New Criterion, by Steve Sherman