Pacific Symphony plays Gounod & Vivaldi with Benjamin Beilman, Violin
”Mr. Beilman’s handsome technique, burnished sound and quiet confidence…showed why he has come so far so fast.”
The New York Times
Benjamin Beilman, violin
Carl St.Clair, conductor
GOUNOD Petite Symphonie in B-flat Major
Andante cantabile (quasi adagio) attacca
Scherzo. Allegro moderato
VIVALDI The Four Seasons
Concerto No. 1 in E major, Op. 8, RV 269, “Spring”
Concerto No. 2 in G minor, Op. 8, RV 315, “Summer”
Concerto No. 3 in F major, Op. 8, RV 293, “Autumn”
Concerto No. 4 in F minor, Op. 8, RV 297 “Winter”
Benjamin Beilman has won international praise both for his passionate performances and deep rich tone which the Washington Post called “mightily impressive,” and The New York Times described as “muscular with a glint of violence.” The Times has also praised his “handsome technique, burnished sound, and quiet confidence,” and the Strad described his playing as “pure poetry.”
Beilman’s 22-23 season includes his debuts performing Prokofiev 1 with Trondheim Symphony and Hamburg Symphoniker, Barber with the Oslo Philharmonic, and Tchaikovsky with the Taipei Symphony. He will also return to the Detroit Symphony to perform Mendelssohn under Matthias Pintscher, and on tour across Australasia, appearing with the West Australian Symphony Orchestra, Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra, and the Tasmania Symphony. In recital, he will premiere a new work by Gabriella Smith, commissioned by the Schubert Club in St. Paul, and the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. In April 2022, he became one of the youngest artists to be appointed to the faculty of the Curtis Institute of Music.
Highlights of Beilman’s 21-22 season included his return to the San Francisco Symphony, performances of the Samuel Taylor Coleridge Concerto with the Indianapolis, Toledo, and Charlotte Symphonies, as well as the premiere a new Violin Concerto by Chris Rogerson with the Kansas City Symphony and Gemma New. In Europe, highlights include performances with the Swedish Radio Symphony and Elim Chan, the Antwerp Symphony and Krzysztof Urbański, and the Toulouse Symphony and Ryan Bancroft. He also made his debut with the BBC Scottish Symphony, and returned to the Tonkünstler Orchestra, with whom he has recorded a concerto by Thomas Larcher.
In past seasons, Beilman has performed with many major orchestras worldwide including the Chicago Symphony, Philadelphia Orchestra, Antwerp Symphony, Rotterdam Philharmonic, London Philharmonic, Frankfurt Radio Symphony, Zurich Tonhalle, Sydney Symphony, Houston Symphony, and Minnesota Orchestra. Conductors with whom he works include Yannick Nézet-Séguin, Cristian Măcelaru, Lahav Shani, Ryan Bancroft, Karina Canellakis, Edward Gardner, Juraj Valčuha, Han-Na Chang, Elim Chan, Osmo Vänskä, and Giancarlo Guerrero.
In recital and chamber music, Beilman performs regularly at the major halls across the world, including Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Concertgebouw Amsterdam, Kölner Philharmonie, Berlin Philharmonie, Wigmore Hall, Louvre (Paris), Bunka Kaikan (Tokyo) and at festivals he has performed at Verbier, Aix-en-Provence Easter, Prague Dvorak, Robeco Summer Concerts (Amsterdam), Music@Menlo, Marlboro and Seattle Chamber Music, amongst others. In early 2018 he premiered a new work dedicated to the political activist Angela Davis written by Frederic Rzewski and commissioned by Music Accord which he has performed extensively across the US. He also acts as Artistic Advisor to the Lobero Theatre Chamber Music Project in Santa Barbara, California.
Beilman studied at the Curtis Institute of Music, and with Christian Tetzlaff at the Kronberg Academy, and has received many prestigious accolades including a Borletti-Buitoni Trust Fellowship, an Avery Fisher Career Grant and a London Music Masters Award. He has recorded works by Stravinsky, Janáček and Schubert for Warner Classics, and plays the “Ysaÿe” Guarneri del Gesù from 1740, generously on loan from the Nippon Music Foundation.
Pacific Symphony, led by Music Director Carl St.Clair for the last 34 years, has been the resident orchestra of the Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall since 2006. Currently in its 45th season, the Symphony is the largest orchestra formed in the U.S. in the last 50 years and is recognized as an outstanding ensemble making strides on both the national and international scene, as well as in its own community of Orange County. In April 2018, Pacific Symphony made its debut at Carnegie Hall as one of two orchestras invited to perform during a yearlong celebration of composer Philip Glass’ 80th birthday, and the following month the orchestra toured China. The orchestra made its national PBS debut in June 2018 on Great Performances with Peter Boyer’s Ellis Island: The Dream of America, conducted by St.Clair. Presenting more than 100 concerts and events each year and a rich array of education and community engagement programs, the Symphony reaches more than 300,000 residents—from school children to senior citizens.
The Symphony offers repertoire ranging from the great orchestral masterworks to music from today’s most prominent composers. Just over a decade ago, the Symphony launched the highly successful opera initiative, “Symphonic Voices,” which continues in April 2024 with Puccini’s La Bohème. It also offers an in-demand Pops season, enhanced by state-of-the-art video and sound, led by celebrated pops conductors. Each season also includes Café Ludwig, a chamber music series; an educational Family Musical Mornings series; and Sunday Matinees, an orchestral matinée series offering rich explorations of selected works led by St.Clair.
Founded in 1978 as a collaboration between California State University, Fullerton (CSUF) and North Orange County community leaders led by Marcy Mulville, the Symphony performed its first concerts at Fullerton’s Plummer Auditorium as the Pacific Chamber Orchestra, under the baton of then-CSUF orchestra conductor Keith Clark. Two seasons later, the Symphony expanded its size and changed its name to Pacific Symphony Orchestra. Then, in 1981-82, the orchestra moved to Knott’s Berry Farm for one year. The subsequent four seasons, led by Clark, took place at Santa Ana High School auditorium where the Symphony also made its first six acclaimed recordings. In September 1986, the Symphony moved to the new Orange County Performing Arts Center, and from 1987-2016, the orchestra additionally presented a Summer Festival at Irvine Meadows Amphitheatre. In 2006, the Symphony moved into the Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall, with striking architecture by Cesar Pelli and acoustics by Russell Johnson. In 2008, the Symphony inaugurated the hall’s critically acclaimed 4,322-pipe William J. Gillespie Concert Organ. The orchestra embarked on its first European tour in 2006, performing in nine cities in three countries.
Recordings commissioned and performed by the Symphony include the release of William Bolcom’s Songs of Lorca and Prometheus (2015-16), Richard Danielpour’s Toward a Season of Peace, Philip Glass’ The Passion of Ramakrishna (2013-14), as well as Michael Daugherty’s Mount Rushmore and The Gospel According to Sister Aimee (2012-13). In 2014-15, Elliot Goldenthal released a recording of his Symphony in G-sharp Minor, written for and performed by the Symphony. The Symphony has also commissioned and recorded An American Requiem by Danielpour and Fire Water Paper: A Vietnam Oratorio by Goldenthal featuring Yo-Yo Ma. Other recordings have included collaborations with such composers as Lukas Foss and Toru Takemitsu. Other leading composers commissioned by the Symphony include Paul Chihara, Daniel Catán, James Newton Howard, William Kraft, Ana Lara, Tobias Picker, Christopher Theofanidis, Frank Ticheli, John Wineglass, Sir James Macmillan, and Chen Yi.
In both 2005 and 2010, the Symphony received the prestigious ASCAP Award for Adventurous Programming. Also in 2010, a study by the League of American Orchestras, Fearless Journeys, included the Symphony as one of the country’s five most innovative orchestras. The Symphony’s award-winning education and community engagement programs benefit from the vision of St.Clair and are designed to integrate the orchestra and its music into the community in ways that stimulate all ages. The Symphony’s Class Act program has been honored as one of nine exemplary orchestra education programs by the National Endowment for the Arts and the League of American Orchestras. The list of instrumental training initiatives includes Pacific Symphony Youth Orchestra, Pacific Symphony Youth Wind Ensemble, Pacific Symphony Santiago Strings, and new this season, Pacific Symphony Youth Concert Band. The Symphony also spreads the joy of music through arts-X-press, Class Act, Heartstrings, OC Can You Play With Us?, Santa Ana Strings, Strings for Generations, Symphony on the Go!, and Symphony in the Cities.