Music: From the Inside Out

Standing in front of the Philadelphia Orchestra, the slender, highbrowed violinist found "my fingers cold . . . getting weaker and weaker." He was "submitting to an ordeal by fire in front of some half-hundred string players . . . come to . . . rehearsal with a decided 'show me' attitude." That December day in 1925, young Budapest-born Violinist Joseph Szigeti showed them—with the Beethoven Violin Concerto.

Since then, Violinist Szigeti, world-traveled and world-famed, has endured many another ordeal by fire—including such unforeseen ones as his recent detention on Ellis Island on...

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