After a holiday season hiatus, the Center for the Performing Arts 2011-2012 season resumes with a bang Thursday evening when Germany's Hamburg Symphony Orchestra performs works by Ralph Vaughan Williams, Johannes Brahms and Antonin Dvorak at 7:30 p.m. in Penn State's Eisenhower Auditorium. Violin virtuoso Guy Braunstein, concertmaster of the Berlin Philharmonic, is guest soloist for Brahms' Violin Concerto in D Major.
Twelve years ago Braunstein became the youngest concertmaster in the history of the Berlin Philharmonic, which is often cited as the world's greatest orchestra. Listen to some of his recordings or watch his performances on YouTube, and it's easy to understand why. Braunstein's square jaw and solid build might make him look more like a rugby player than a violinist, but when he puts bow to strings he's a master of grace and finesse.
The concert, conducted by Englishman Jeffrey Tate, opens with Vaughan Williams' overture from the symphonic suite The Wasps and concludes with Dvorak's Symphony No. 7 in D minor.