William Hagen, an internationally known violinist, performed with the BYU-Idaho Symphony Orchestra at the Ruth H. Barrus Concert Hall, on Thursday, Nov. 21.
“This is my first-time playing Beethoven, so I’m really excited,” Hagen said.
Hagen has been playing the violin since his childhood, and the violin has always been his passion. At age 27, he’s played all over the world in different orchestras, including orchestras in Utah, Oregon and St. Louis.
According to the Center Stage website “Hagen has also played in international organizations such as the Brussel’s Philharmonic, the National Orchestra of Belgium, and the Yokohama Sinfonietta.”
Robert Tueller, a music faculty member, conducted the orchestra. Hagen joined the orchestra in their first piece for Beethoven’s “Violin Concerto in D major, Op. 61.”
According to the Encyclopedia Britannica, the concerto was one of the earliest violin concertos composed on such a large scale. It premiered in Vienna, Austria on Dec. 23, 1806. It’s considered one of the most performed violin concerto pieces in history.
“We played one of the greatest achievements of the human race,” Hagen said. “When you hear a piece of music that’s been around 200 years, and it’s still being played, you know it’s good stuff. Think about how many songs you can name from the 80s or from the 70s. We played something from the 1800s, so that’s pretty good stuff.”
BYU-I students, faculty and members of the community attended the event and guests filled the entire concert hall.
“I loved seeing William Hagen feel the music,” said Julie Redd, a junior studying communication. “It’s almost like you could see his soul embodied into the instrument that he was playing. I think the most exciting part was watching him feel the music.”