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Front Page

Dr. Ruth Westheimer and
Zubin Mehta

Thomas Hampson and
wife Andrea Herberstein

Marion Wiesel, Ingeborg Rennert, and Ira Leon Rennert congratulate
Zubin Mehta and his wife Nancy

Zvi Galil and Dr. Ruth

Dr. Ruth dancing with
Michael Steinhardt

Elaine and Richard Hirsch (right) with friends

Peter Duchin with Elaine Wolfensohn and her son Adam and
daughter Naomi

Dr. Ruth with (l-r) Michael Steinhardt, Judith and Burton Resnick,
and Charles Bronfman

Mehta Marks 70th Anniversary
at Carnegie Hall Concert

Story and Photos by Tim Boxer

HAT does it mean when a singer does not make his stage entrance on schedule? "Normally," Zubin Mehta announced at Carnegie Hall, "it means he has cancelled."

But baritone Thomas Hampson did not cancel. In fact, he had given out tickets to his friends to see him sing Mahler’s Ruckert Lieder with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra’s 70th anniversary tour in the U.S.

He arrived too late to participate in the first half of the program. Instead he closed the concert with his performance. "I forgot the time," he later told me.

"He didn’t realize the concert started at 7," Mehta announced. "Not his fault. But heads will roll."

At the post-performance dinner at the Waldorf-Astoria, Mehta said that this was "an adventurous evening. Not many can finish an evening following Berlioz’s Symphonie Fantastique. He was grateful that the audience had the patience to wait for Hampson. "In Europe somebody would have booed."

The New York audience was too polite and respectful for that, consisting of such notables as Ingeborg and Ira Leon Rennert, Israeli Ambassador to the UN Dan Gillerman, Dr. Ruth Westheimer, Michael Steinhardt, Elaine and Richard Hirsch, Judith and Burt Resnick, Sanford Batkin, Malcolm Thomson, Peter Duchin who invited some of the guests to his 70th birthday party next summer in Sun Valley, Idaho, and Zvi Galil, dean of the Fu Foundation Engineering and Applied Science School at Columbia University.

"Write fast," Galil said. "In four months I’ll be gone – I’m going to be president of Tel Aviv University."

Elaine Wolfensohn, who co-chaired the benefit with Charles Bronfman, said Hampson "was a beautiful ending to the concert." She was accompanied by her son Adam and daughter Naomi. Her husband, former World Bank chief James Wolfensohn, was busy with meetings in London.

Bronfman said to the maestro, "We don’t see each other too often."

Mehta replied, "You can come to any concert of mine – late."

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