I don't know about you, but when I was 11 years old I sure as heck wasn't soling with the Israel Philharmonic. Gil Shaham has been a staple of the violin world for so long that it seems impossible that he could only be in his early 40's. Samuel Barber has been one of my favorite composers since high school when I had the privilege of playing his First Symphony on a European tour with the Greater Boston Youth Symphony Orchestra (now BYSO) in 1992. He is an amazing composer with a very unique voice. My father was a fan of Barber's and introduced me to his music. I remember thinking immediately that he seemed to have something to say as a composer.
My favorite part of this Shaham clip, aside from the phrasing and his amazing tone, is how much fun he is having on stage. That is not always the case with many professional musicians and is a breath of fresh air. He really seems to be enjoying the conversation he's having with the BBC Symphony Orchestra and we can all learn from that.