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'Music of the Canvas'

March 18, 2004|by ANDREA ROWLAND

andrear@herald-mail.com

For acclaimed violinist Nicolas Kendall, making music isn't a job. Playing the violin on stages around the world is a way to express himself and an avenue for living life to its fullest, he said.

"It's about saying something with your music," said Kendall, 25, of Philadelphia. "It's about meeting people and learning about different cultures."

Kendall will perform Peter Ilich Tchaikovsky's Violin Concerto in D Major - a piece he called "the pinnacle of Romantic music ... lush and colorful" - during the Maryland Symphony Orchestra's season finale MasterWorks program at The Maryland Theatre in Hagerstown.

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MasterWorks V - "Music of the Canvas: Art by Music" - will start at 8 p.m. Saturday, March 20, and at 3 p.m. Sunday, March 21.

The upcoming concert will be Kendall's first performance with the Maryland Symphony Orchestra - but an encore showing with MSO Music Director Elizabeth Schulze. The violinist played Tchaikovsky's Violin Concerto under Schulze's direction after winning the National Symphony Orchestra's Young Soloist Concerto Competition in 1995 at age 15.

"It's very meaningful that I'm doing this with her again," said Kendall, a Silver Spring, Md., native who hails from a family of accomplished string musicians. "It was so invigorating and so rewarding and so much fun before."

Kendall, who holds the John French Violin Chair of Young Concert Artists Inc., studied with Victor Danchenko at the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia. His many musical accolades include first prize in the 2002 Young Concert Artists International Auditions, the Fergus Prize for an appearance with orchestra, the Pennsylvania Prize with the Janet Weis Award and the Brenreiter Prize for Violin. He has performed at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C., and New York's Merkin Concert Hall and Carnegie Hall. In May, Kendall will make his New York concerto debut at the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts' Alice Tully Hall. He's also performed in Europe and Asia, he said.

The opportunity to see the world, to learn about different cultures while performing in cities large and small, has been "such a mind-blowing experience," said Kendall, who also enjoys playing percussion and fiddle with his American folk music trio, Time for Three.

"I've been able to experiment with music, to express myself in these different languages," he said.

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