Life and work
Tennstedt studied at the Leipzig Academy of Music violin with Walter Davisson, piano with A. Rhodes and music theory. At 22 he joined in 1948 the post of first concertmaster of the Orchestra of Municipal Theater in Halle an der Saale, whose chief conductor he was in 1952. From 1954 he was first Kapellmeister at the Municipal Theater in Chemnitz, in 1958 the General Music Director of the State Sachsen in Radebeul and 1962-1971 at the State Theatre in Schwerin. In addition, he graduated in 1970 with the Komische Oper Berlin a guest contract. He gave numerous guest appearances in the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe.
In 1971, he fled to the West, where in 1972 he was music director at the Kiel Opera House. In 1974, under a five -year contract as conductor of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, he succeeded his international breakthrough. After that, he was the leader of the NDR Symphony Orchestra in Hamburg, until he took over the management of the London Philharmonic Orchestra by Sir Georg Solti from 1983 to 1987.
He died on 11 January 1998.