Arturo Toscanini was an Italian conductor. Toscanini has been highly acclaimed for his authoritative and memorable interpretations of symphonies and operas. He brought great music to thousands of new listeners during a career that spanned nearly 70 years. Born in Parma, Toscanini became principal conductor at Italy’s leading opera house, La Scala in Milan, in 1898. From 1908 to 1915 he was principal conductor of the Metropolitan Opera Company in New York City. In 1937 he became conductor of the National Broadcasting Company (NBC) Symphony Orchestra, which had been organized specially for him.
Toscanini, who always conducted from memory, is credited with restoring the proper style and discipline to Italian opera, particularly those of Giuseppe Verdi. In the symphonic repertoire, he was considered unrivaled in interpreting the music of Ludwig van Beethoven and Johannes Brahms. Noted for attention to detail and fidelity to composers’ intentions, Toscanini brought clarity and precision to conducting.