Alberto Bolet, the Havana-born conductor who led orchestras on three continents and spread Cuban rhythms throughout the world, died Nov. 10 of natural causes in Teaneck, N.J. He was 94.
Bolet was the conductor of the Havana Philharmonic in 1959 when he learned that communist leader Fidel Castro had targeted him for arrest. Bolet received safe passage to England only by convincing the British Broadcasting Corp. to offer him a contract.
He went on to lead the symphonies in Dallas, Sydney and Bilbao.
Upon his return to Cuba in 1936, Bolet founded the island’s first classical music radio station and the group Trio de La Habana.
He conducted the Havana Philharmonic for nine years before Castro blacklisted him.
Bolet wrote two books, “History of Chamber Music” and “How to Play the Castanets.”
He is survived by his wife, a daughter and two sons.