When: 8 p.m. Feb. 3 and 2:30 p.m. Feb. 5

Admission: $20-$94

Where: Heinz Hall, Pittsburgh

Details: 412-392-4900 or pittsburghsymphony.org/midori

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Updated 1 hour ago

Violinist Midori is comfortable playing works from Bach to Block, and this weekend will settle into Pittsburgh's Heinz Hall with one of the most iconic concertos for her instrument.

She will perform Felix Mendelssohn's famous and oft-played Violin Concerto in E minor Feb. 3 and 5. She and the orchestra also will take the concert Feb. 4 to New Castle, Lawrence County, and Feb. 6 to West Virginia University as part of an outreach program.

Such performances are common for the violinist, 45, who founded Midori and Friends and Music Sharing programs to advance music education in the United States and her native Japan.

She also works with orchestral residencies in this country and Japan.

Born Midori Goto in Osaka, Japan, she began playing at 3 and first performed publicly at 6. She came to the United States at 11 to study at the pre-college at the Julliard School of Music in New York City and quickly became well known in her prodigy years.

In addition to her music studies and work as a teacher at the University of Southern California, she also has bachelor's and master's degrees in psychology.

As a performer, she has recorded and played works from the 24 caprices by Niccolo Paganini to those of the 20th century's Dmitri Shostakovich and Ernest Block. Along with the sonatas of J.S. Bach, she also has done the concertos of Hungarian contemporary Peter Eotvos.

“Midori's Bach is radically introverted, as if we could move around inside Bach's brain,” Germany's Kulturradio said in August 2016. “She plays with a sparkling precision that is almost 1xbet frightening, perfect as a Zen exercise. And yet, even as polished as her playing seems, it is never uniform.”

Just about a year ago, Sony Classical released a 10-CD collection, “The Art of Midori,” which includes many standard gems, including the Mendelssohn work she will play on this visit.

That concerto, which was premiered in 1845, is one of the most popular pieces for that instrument. It is one of Mendelssohn's last orchestral works and is known for its striking opening melody, which the soloist presents almost immediately.

It is a different opening than many concertos in which the orchestra offers the theme the performer then develops.

The concert also will feature two symphonies that in many ways are symbolic of their time periods.

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's Symphony No. 35 from 1783 is known as the “Haffner Symphony” because it was commissioned by the Haffner family. In that way, it represents the relationship between wealthy families and musicians that produced so much music in that era.

Meanwhile, Symphony No. 1 by Johannes Brahms first was played in 1876 and is almost a symbol of the full, large-orchestra writing of that time. As the first of his four symphonies, it is indicative of the thematic richness that was to develop in his work.

Bob Karlovits is a Tribune-Review contributing writer.

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