Hendl, Walter, American conductor; b. West New York, N.J., Jan. 12, 1917. He began piano lessons in childhood; after further piano training with Clarence Adler (1934–37), he was a scholarship student of Saperton (piano, 1938) and Reiner (conducting, 1939) at the Curtis Inst. of Music in Philadelphia; during the summers of 1941-2, he attended Koussevitzky’s conducting courses at the Berkshire Music Center in Tanglewood. He was asst. conductor of the N.Y Phil. (1945–49) and a faculty member of the Juilliard School of Music in N.Y. (1947–50). From 1949 to 1958 he was music director of the Dallas Sym. Orch., and also of the Chautauqua (N.Y.) Sym. Orch. (1953–72). He was assoc. conductor of the Chicago Sym. Orch. (1958–64) and music director of its Ravinia Festival (1959–63). From 1964 to 1972 he was director of the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, N.Y. He was music director of the Erie (Pa.) Phil, from 1976 to 1990.
—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire