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Young violin phenom Benjamin Beilman returns with BPO

Benjamin Beilman is back.

He is the violin phenomenon who played the Mendelssohn Violin Concerto at Kleinhans Music Hall a couple of years ago. And a couple of years before that, he was the young up-and-comer spotted, and swiftly booked, by Clementina Fleshler of the Buffalo Chamber Music Society. At 26, Beilman has outgrown the prodigy phase. But his appearance promises to be every bit as exciting. He is a performer both subtle and passionate, and Kleinhans brings out his strengths.

"In the clear acoustics of Kleinhans you could feel the bow dancing across the strings and hear the occasional scrape. It made things thrilling," ran the News' review of Beilman's last appearance. Beilman plays the “Engleman” Stradivarius from 1709, on loan from the Nippon Music Foundation. He will be joining the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra April 8 and 9 for the Violin Concerto No. 3 of Camille Saint-Saens.

To complete the concert, guest conductor John Axelrod also is conducting Beethoven's popular "Pastoral" Symphony. The "Pastoral d'ete" by Arthur Honegger rounds out this celebration of spring. Born in Houston, Texas, Axelrod graduated from Harvard in 1988 but has built his career on distant shores. Currently, he is principal conductor of the Orchestra Sinfonica di Milano Giuseppe Verdi. He was also recently named the artistic and musical director of the Real Orquesta Sinfónica de Sevilla.

The concert takes place at 8 p.m. April 8 and 2:30 p.m. April 9 in Kleinhans Music Hall. Tickets are $29-$82. Pre-concert talks take place an hour before both concerts. For info, call 885-5000 or visit


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