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Encore: Pianist and Conductor Christoph Eschenbach

Christoph Eschenbach

This past May, pianist and conductor - and former music director of The Philadelphia Orchestra - Christoph Eschenbach was awarded the Ernst von Siemens prize for a lifetime in the service of music.

Just prior to receiving the prestigious and much-deserved accolade, Maestro Eschenbach turned 75, and decided that it was time to step down from his current post as music director of the National Symphony Orchestra in Washington, DC.  He commented that after 30 years of directing orchestras, perhaps it was time for a break.

It was seven years previous - in May 2008 - as Christoph Eschenbach was preparing for his last concerts as music director of the Philadelphia Orchestra, that Jill had the chance to speak with the maestro. We are pleased to be able to encore that conversation this week.

It's his parents' fault. For Joe's sixth birthday, they gave him a transistor radio. All of a sudden, their dreams of having a doctor or lawyer (or even a fry cook) in the family went down the tubes.