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Maazel was born of American parents in Neuilly-sur-Seine in France, but grew up in the United States at the age of seven he was Already on. lesson in conducting, and he made his debut when he was eight. At twelve he toured as conductor of major orchestras. He made his debut as a violinist at the age of fifteen. He later studied at the University of Pittsburgh. In Vienna, he studied conducting with Hans Swarowsky. One of his first contract was with the Netherlands Radio Philharmonic in Hilversum.
In 1972, he succeeded George Szell as Music Director of the Cleveland Orchestra. This was very much against the meaning of the musicians, who found themselves shut out in the designation. Just two of the one hundred members have to say about Maazel the best choice. Maazels emotional interpretation of music differed greatly from the precision and punctuality of Szell. Maazel would occupy the post ten years, its greatest merit in that period was the inclusion of George Gershwins Porgy and Bess, with a fully colored occupation. Maazel was best known for his performance as Music Director of the new year's concert of the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra in which he also played violin.
After Cleveland was Maazel because of political reasons [source? ]only two years Director from 1982 to 1984 at the Vienna State opera. Then worked at the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra from 1988 to 1996 and theSymphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks from 1993 to 2002. In that year, he succeeded Kurt Masur as Music Director of the New York Philharmonic Orchestra. Since 2006 he has been Chief conductor of theOrquestra de la Comunitat Valenciana in Valencia.
Maazel is married to the German actress Dietlinde Turban. They have two sons and a daughter.