Chicago Symphony Orchestra music director Riccardo Muti, whose mantle must be completely covered by now, has received yet another honor. This time, he was awarded an honorary doctorate in literature and comparative cultural studies from the University of Naples. As part of a keynote address Monday in the Basilica of San Giovanni Maggiore in Naples, Italy, Muti led the Orchestra of San Pietro a Majella Conservatory in the first movement of Schubert's Symphony No. 8 ("Unfinished").
It marked a homecoming for Muti, a native of Naples and one of the city's favorite sons. After studying piano at the Conservatory of San Pietro in his hometown, he received a diploma in composition and conducting from the Verdi Conservatory in Milan, Italy.
In the last few months alone, Muti has been honored with the 2012 Vittorio de Sica Prize, in recognition of his contributions to music; a honorary degree in arts and heritage from the IULM University in Milan, and the Award for Culture from by the New York branch of the Italian Institute of Culture.
ABOVE: Riccardo Muti receives the Birgit Nilsson Prize, the classical music world's greatest honor, from King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden in October 2011.