The Vienna Philharmonic At Carnegie Hall

Lorin Maazel conducting Mozart's Symphony No. 40 — with no score — live at Carnegie Hall on March 3, 2012.  (Melanie Burford for NPR)
Lorin Maazel conducting Mozart's Symphony No. 40 — with no score — live at Carnegie Hall on March 3, 2012. (Melanie Burford for NPR)

Lorin Maazel leads the revered orchestra in Mozart's Symphony No. 40 and his own 'Ring Without Words' — Wagner's 'Ring' whittled down to 70 singer-free minutes.

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Lorin Maazel, who turns 82 this month, led the orchestra entirely from memory in both  Mozart's Symphony No. 40 and his own arrangement of Wagner called the "Ring Without Words." No score meant no music stand — and so he had an even more immediate connection to the orchestra.

Lorin Maazel, who turns 82 this month, led the orchestra entirely from memory in both Mozart's Symphony No. 40 and his own arrangement of Wagner called the "Ring Without Words." No score meant no music stand — and so he had an even more immediate connection to the orchestra.

The musicians acknowledge the audience's warm reception.

The musicians acknowledge the audience's warm reception.

According to the Vienna Philharmonic's own description, their string section "is more like a workshop in  the Middle Ages, where newlyarrived musicians are initiated into and  absorb the secrets of the orchestra's special musical style."

According to the Vienna Philharmonic's own description, their string section "is more like a workshop in the Middle Ages, where newlyarrived musicians are initiated into and absorb the secrets of the orchestra's special musical style."

The evening's second half was dedicated to Maazel's own arrangement of Wagner's 17-hour "Ring" cycle — down to a 70-minute suite for orchestra, with no singing.

The evening's second half was dedicated to Maazel's own arrangement of Wagner's 17-hour "Ring" cycle — down to a 70-minute suite for orchestra, with no singing.

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Conductor Lorin Maazel, whose own, truncated orchestra-only arrangement of Wagner's Ring cycle will be performed by the Vienna Philharmonic.

Conductor Lorin Maazel, whose own, truncated orchestra-only arrangement of Wagner's Ring cycle will be performed by the Vienna Philharmonic.

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