Riccardo Chailly is a conductor from Milan, Italy who stands as one of the few, if not the only classical music conductor of world-renown to get his start as a young performer playing drums in a rhythm and blues band. Chailly began his career as a conductor at the age of 20 when he joined the famed Italian opera house La Scala as the assistant conductor to Claudio Abbado in the late 1970s. Following several decades of fulfilling the role of lead conductor at some of the greatest orchestras throughout Europe and the United States, Riccardo Chailly grew in stature among classical music as one of the greatest living conductors in the grand symphonic tradition, evidenced particularly by his performances of the works of Anton Bruckner and Gustav Mahler.
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