Zubin Mehta (born 29 April 1936) is an Indian conductor of Western and Eastern classical music. He is currently music director of the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra (IPO) and Conductor Emeritus of the Los Angeles Philharmonic.
Mehta's father was the founder of the Bombay Symphony Orchestra, and from him, Mehta received his early musical education. When he was 18, he enrolled in the Vienna state music academy from which he graduated after three years with a diploma as a conductor. He began winning international competitions and conducted the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic at age 21. Beginning in the 1960s, Mehta gained experience by substituting for celebrated maestros throughout the world.
Mehta was Music Director of the Montreal Symphony Orchestra from 1961 to 1967; and Music Director of the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra from 1962 to 1978, being the youngest music director ever for any major North American orchestra. In 1969, he was appointed Music Adviser to the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra and in 1981, Mehta became its permanent Music Director for Life. From 1978 to 1991, he was Music Director of the New York Philharmonic. Since 1985, he has also been chief conductor of the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino in Florence, Italy.
He is an honorary citizen of both Florence and Tel Aviv and was made an honorary member of the Vienna State Opera in 1997 and of the Bavarian State Operain 2006. The title of "Honorary Conductor" was bestowed on him by numerous orchestras throughout the world. More recently, Mehta made several tours with the Bavarian State Opera and kept up a busy schedule of guest conducting appearances until present times. In December 2006, he received the "Kennedy Center Honor" and in October 2008 was honored by the Japanese Imperial Family with the "Praemium Imperiale". In 2016, Zubin Mehta was appointed Honorary Conductor of the Teatro San Carlo, Naples.