The Daily Tar Heel

Serving the students and the University community since 1893

Wednesday February 8th

Symphony set for classic show

Violinist Reagin to perform solo

Elgar, Mendelssohn and Mozart will provide a three-course musical feast on campus tonight, courtesy of the N.C. Symphony. Frequent visitors of Memorial Hall, the symphony has put together a show that will feature some heavyweights of the classical music world. "It's a very well-known kind of program," said Scott Freck, general manager of the symphony. "We return to what we do best and what has really stood the test of time." The performance will feature violinist Brian Reagin with a solo performance of the Mendelssohn Violin Concerto. "It's a real standard - every student has to know this piece before they leave the conservatory," said Reagin, who received his musical education at the Cleveland Institute of Music, a feeder into the world renowned Cleveland Orchestra. It was at the Cleveland Institute that Reagin's history with the concerto began. "This actually is the first solo piece I was ever paid to play," he said. Reagin won a competition playing it in college. He's played it several times since then, including filling in for the world-renowned Itzhak Perlman at a N.C. Symphony performance two days after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, when flight cancellations forced Perlman to stay in Detroit. "It's very virtuosic, with lots of fast running around, and it lies well," he said, explaining that this means it is well written for the instrument. Other pieces to be performed at tonight's performance are Mozart's Symphony No. 38, the Prague Symphony and Elgar's Enigma Variations. The concert will be conducted by musical director Grant Llewellyn. Llewellyn is an especially collaborative conductor, Freck said. "If you think of sort of conductors of the 19th and 20th centuries, you think of a very severe, white- haired stern looking guy," he said. "That's not Grant at all." His attitude creates a great musical environment, Freck said. "It's a warm and welcome kind of process. Audiences respond to him because he is so human and genial," he said. "That comes through loud and clear." Symphony performers are especially excited about returning to Chapel Hill because it is where the group was founded. The official date of the anniversary is three weeks away - May 14. "Playing at Carolina is a very special thing for us," Freck said. "There can be a really very vibrant energy to playing in a university setting." Students are encouraged to attend the show, Freck said. "It allows you to visit another culture from another time, without ever leaving the comfort of your campus," he said. "I think the modern symphony orchestra is the greatest instrument created, capable of producing any sound imaginable. I really believe that - that's why I love going to our concerts." Contact the Arts Editor at


The Daily Tar Heel's 2023 Rivalry Edition

Special Print Edition

Games & Horoscopes

Print Edition Games Archive