It was, in the end, left to the long-time music director of the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, Zubin Mehta, to put his finger on what was being celebrated.
On a cool, clear night in Tel Aviv last month, Maestro Mehta, himself celebrating 50 years with the IPO, led hundreds of international patrons and well-wishers in a rousing chorus of "Happy Birthday, dear Philharmonic", as the orchestra mark
Her grave, at the suburban end of a Paris bus line, is never long unattended. A wooden box on the marble base is stuffed with notes from visiting fans. A student drops by in her lunch hour to play Mozart. "Barbara loved Mozart," she explains.
It is very rare to find musician Tamsin Waley-Cohen on her own. She has a constant companion at concerts, at cafes and even on holidays. It is a long-term relationship which, although it has had its ups and downs, has enabled her to move forward with her career.
The lyrics from his 1978 musical They're Playing Our Song - "Oh ho, they're playing my song, oh yeah, they're playing my song" - seem to be an apt way to describe Marvin Hamlisch. The legendary, multi-award-winning composer/conductor is the creator of some of the best-known American show tunes.
For members of one of the world's largest orchestras, they are rehearsing in a remarkably low-key room, stuck away in a Tel Aviv suburb, devoid of any acoustic support and framed by a big sheet of black fabric to keep the sun out.