Maestro Vjekoslav Sutej passed away
FAREWELL TO THE MUSIC GIANT
Maestro Vjekoslav Sutej passed away on Wednesday after a long and difficult struggle with leukemia.
Maestro Vjekoslav Sutej (59) passed away this Wednesday at 2:20 pm at the Rebro hospital in Zagreb. Sutej fought leukemia for the past couple of years and he was on a treatment in the United States for nine months. He spent the last moments with his wife Ivana and their two children. Vjekoslav Sutej, internationally recognized conductor, was born in 1951 in Rijeka. He spent his childhood with parents who were also musicians. His father, Josip Sutej, was a tenor and his mother, Alemka Stefanini Sutej, sang soprano at the Croatian National Opera. He learned how to conduct from Igor Gjadrov at the MusicAcademy in Zagreb and he completed his graduate studies in Rome with Franco Ferrara.
After finishing the studies, Sutej worked as artistic director of the Dubrovnik Summer Festival and as a Professor at the Music Academy. He served as the head of the Croatian National Theater in Split for five years before his talent was recognized by the international community. Maestro conducted on the Red Square, at the Vienna State Opera, Tokyo,Madrid, Nagoya ... His international career began in New Jersey where he became the artistic director of the Hollybush Festival. During the early 1990’s he was also the director of the Venice festival called La Fenice.
Besides all this, he was a member of the Academy of Fine Arts in Spain and he was the founder of the Royal Seville Symphony Orchestra. Sutej worked as the artistic director of the Houston Grand Opera where he opened 19 shows, he conducted in the Vienna State Opera, Opera in Seattle, San Francisco, Tokyo, Nagoyji, Madrid, Naples, and other cities around the world.
Coping with severe leukemia and his friendship with Jose Carerras
The conductor worked with many great artists, such as Jose Carerras, Placido Domingo and Montserrat Caballe, until about a year ago when he was diagnosed with acute leukemia. After he learned of a disease Sutej followed the advice from his great friend, Jose Carerras, and traveled to Seattle where he was scheduled to undergo a bone marrow transplantation.
Sutej’s greatest support was his wife Ivana
During the nine-month treatment in the US, Sutej was accompanied by his 32-year-old wife Ivana, their six-year old daughter, and a three-year old son. After the treatment, Sutej returned to Croatia in early June and conducted the event called ‘Opera under the Stars’. However, the beautiful moments did not last as Sutej ended up in the hospital by the end of the June. The Rebro hospital tried another bone marrow transplantation, but his body rejected it. His wife then said that she hopes that Sutej will be able to try a third transplant, but unfortunately, this did not happen.
02. 12. 2009.
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