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Ernest Fleischmann

classical music impresario

Ernest Fleischmann was one of the most successful orchestra managers in the world. He left Frankfurt at age 12 when his parents fled from Adolf Hitler to settle in Cape Town. As a young man in South Africa, he organized two music festivals, and at age 35 Fleischmann was hired as general director by the London Symphony Orchestra. In 1969, he took over the Los Angeles Philharmonic, where he guided the orchestra's direction for 29 years. During that time, he transformed a good provincial orchestra into an orchestra with a worldwide reputation. He attracted music directors of international stature, created links to the film music industry and made the traditional Hollywood Bowl America's largest summer festival. -- from a profile by Georg Hirsch