It was Sibelius’ “dearest wish” and “overriding ambition” to become an esteemed violin
star. Instead, he ultimately composed one of the most treasured pieces in violin repertoire.
Sibelius’ Violin Concerto, performed here by the masterful Rachel Barton Pine, balances
substance with pyrotechnics.
The first half of the program features two rivers: Schumann’s “Rhenish” symphony was
inspired by a happy vacation along Germany’s Rhine, while Smetana’s “Moldau” winds
its way through Prague.