ZUBIN: The Zubin Mehta Story by Martin & Ross Yockey Bookspan

ZUBIN: The Zubin Mehta Story

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Zubi baby"" is surely a gifted conductor, and charismatic as all get-out, but does anyone really want or need a worshipfully romanticized, year-by-year history of his impressive but undramatic and still-young career? Well, if so, here it is, in reasonably literate form--complete with Zubin's horoscopes, quotes from proud Mommy and Daddy, the maestro's own articulate comments on music, and gentle murmurs on marital problems from both former and current wives. Parsee son of the founder of the Bombay Symphony, Zubin forsook medical school for music, studied in Vienna and Siena, won competitions, started at second-rate symphonies (like Liverpool), then struck sparks in Philly (at age 24) and soon had Montreal, L.A., the Met, and Israel at his feet. A fast rise, but hardly unique, and Zubin isn't exactly what you could call a Renaissance man; so the authors have to thicken with bland anecdotes and strain, in the worst Hollywood-bio style, for artificial drama: ""Zubin could not repress a shiver as he undressed for bed his first night in Vienna."" They also try far too hard at defending their boy from every conceivable criticism and go off the deep end with their chapter titles: ""The Force of Destiny"" . . . ""Uncanny and Deep Inspiration"". . . . The puffiest of puff jobs, in other words, timed to coincide with Zubin's arrival at the N.Y. Philharmonic; Lincoln Center groupies may be tickled--the rest of us will be more than satisfied with standard program notes.

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 1978
Publisher: Harper & Row