The San Diego Symphony titled last Friday evening’s Jacobs Masterworks program “Tchaikovsky’s Third Symphony”, but when the audience rose to its feet in wonderfully noisy acclamation just before intermission, it was pretty clear that they had spontaneously re-named the evening “Jeff Thayer’s Second”, to honor the San Diego Symphony’s concertmaster for his impressive performance of one of the monuments of the violin repertoire, Béla Bartók’s Violin Concerto No. 2…

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Within the San Diego arts community, participation in Pacific Rim culture is at most only intermittently experienced. But at Saturday’s (Feb. 8) San Diego Symphony concert, a performance of Zhao Jiping’s Second Pipa Concerto featuring the internationally known pipa virtuosa Wu Man sent a clear signal that San Diego claims its Asian connection.

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