Nathalie Stutzmann conducts Brahms — With Gil Shaham

The Philadelphia Orchestra

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Gil Shaham — Violinist

The Philadelphia Orchestra

Nathalie Stutzmann — Conductor

Program notes

One of America's "Big Five," the extraordinary Philadelphia Orchestra welcomes back their principal guest conductor Nathalie Stutzmann and star violinist Gil Shaham for a 100% Brahms evening, celebrating two of his most emblematic works: the Violin Concerto in D and the First Symphony!

The symphony and the concerto premiered within just a few years of each other (1876 and 1879, respectively), but Brahms had begun work on his Symphony No. 1 more than two decades earlier, struggling with the pressure from the public and his peers to continue the grand Germanic symphonic tradition brought to its apex by Beethoven. The final product is an unmitigated triumph, standing as "one of the most distinctive and magnificent works of the symphonic literature." Like the symphony, occasionally referred to as "Beethoven's Tenth," the Brahms Violin Concerto bears some structural and tonal similiarities to Beethoven's, but is widely recognized as one of the finest examples in the genre. We would be hard-pressed to find a more capable interpreter of this formidable work than the Grammy- and Avery Fisher Award-winning Shaham, who has all the goods to pull off difficult technical passages and convey the universe of profound emotion behind the notes.

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