Seven years and two months after her local debut--a recital at Ambassador Auditorium in Pasadena--Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg finally made her first appearance with the Los Angeles Philharmonic on Thursday night in Hollywood Bowl.
In that period, the prize-winning, Italian-born violinist, now 27, has played here a number of times: more than once with Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, with the Pasadena Symphony, and in a special benefit for USC held at the Wiltern Theatre. And she has been seen frequently on television, a medium in which her trend-setting personal style and ebullient personality seem to thrive.
This belated debut, then, might have seemed anti-climactic. It wasn't. With the solid support of the Philharmonic and conductor Daniel Lewis, Salerno-Sonnenberg's performance of Max Bruch's ubiquitous G-minor Concerto emerged both impassioned and controlled.
Indeed, it might have seemed to some--those few who may remember the late Jascha Heifetz's incandescent performance of the same concerto, on this stage in August, 1967--too controlled, even a bit distanced from the emotional core of the piece.