Internationally renowned conductor Leonard Slatkin began his tenure as music director of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra in the 2008-2009 season. He was recently named music director of the Orchestre National de Lyon, beginning with the 2011-2012 season. Additionally, he became principal guest conductor of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra in 2008-2009. He completed his 12th and final season as music director of the National Symphony Orchestra in June 2008, and finished his three-year commitment as music advisor to the Nashville Symphony Orchestra in June 2009. Slatkin continues as principal guest conductor of the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. Born in Los Angeles, where his parents, conductor-violinist Felix Slatkin and cellist Eleanor Aller, were founding members of the Hollywood String Quartet, he began his musical studies on the violin and studied conducting with his father, followed by training with Walter Susskind at Aspen and Jean Morel at The Juilliard School. After a successful tenure as Music Director of the Saint Louis Symphony from 1979 to 1996, he became Conductor Laureate. He served as chief conductor of the BBC Symphony Orchestra from 2000-2004 and principal guest conductor of the Los Angeles Philharmonic at the Hollywood Bowl from 2004 to 2007. His over a hundred recordings have brought seven Grammy Awards and more than 60 Grammy Award nominations. He has received many other honours, including the 2003 National Medal of Arts, France's Chevalier of the Legion of Honour and the League of American Orchestras' Gold Baton for service to American music.
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