Tokyo - Israeli conductor David Shallon, a one-time assistant of Leonard
Bernstein at the New York Philharmonic who went on to lead orchestras around
the world, died in Tokyo after suffering an asthma attack. He was 49.
Shallon, in Japan to conduct the Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra, was
rushed to a hospital after the attack Friday night and pronounced dead soon
thereafter, Kyodo News agency said Saturday.
The conductor, who until recently was musical director of the Jerusalem
Israel Broadcasting Authority Orchestra, came to Japan in early September for
concerts with the Tokyo group.
Shallon's wife, violist Tabea Zimmermann, had performed in the Tokyo
concerts as a soloist, associates in Israel said. The two often performed
"Shallon was at a very promising stage of his career," said Gidon Paz, who
served as the Israel Broadcasting Authority Orchestra's managing director while
Shallon was musical director.
He said Shallon promoted new music and was especially helpful in giving
voice to upcoming Israeli composers by providing venues for their music to be
Shallon worked closely with the late conductor Leonard Bernstein throughout
the years and was his assistant at the New York Philharmonic in the 1970s, Paz
Shallon was serving as conductor of the Luxembourg Symphony Orchestra and
had homes both in Tel Aviv and in a small town outside of Frankfurt, Germany.
Shallon studied at the Vienna Academy of Music. He went on to conduct at
orchestras around the world including the Dusseldorf Symphony, the Berlin
The Tel Aviv-born Shallon is survived by his wife and their 2-year-old son,