B i o g r a p h y
Julian Brown was born in the UK and began playing the violin at the age of 8, later studying with British violinist and teacher, Anthony Saltmarsh. After playing in several orchestras in London, and working for the BBC as a radio producer he came to the US in 1998, where he has been an active member of the classical music scene in the San Francisco Bay Area. He has served as long term concertmaster for several orchestras including Palo Alto Philharmonic, Cambrian Symphony, and California Pops Orchestra, and as guest concertmaster for Winchester Orchestra and Saratoga Symphony. Besides his orchestral and chamber music appearances, he has performed as soloist in Beethoven's Violin Concerto, Spohr's Violin Concerto No. 8 "Gesangscene", Bach’s Double Violin Concerto, Mozart’s Sinfonia Concertante, Rimsky-Korsakov's Scheherazade, and film scores such as Schindler's List and Cinema Paradiso.
He is cofounder with pianist Tamami Honma of the Cal Arte Ensemble, which has performed numerous chamber concerts featuring violin and piano works including all ten of Beethoven's Violin Sonatas, and some of the greatest masterworks for piano trio, quartet and quintet including those by Arensky, Beethoven, Brahms, Mozart, Schubert, Schumann, and Shostakovich. Their performance of Beethoven's Archduke Piano Trio received praise in the San Francisco Classical Voice: "What it needs is the joy in life brought to it by these players. Their relaxed flexibility in phrasing made everything roll along. The finale was the movement most transformed from other performances I’ve heard." In 2018 they they presented complete performances of all five Beethoven Piano Concertos and Beethoven's Violin Concerto, Mozart's Requiem, and Stravinsky's L'Histoire du soldat.
In recent years, Julian has been teaching violin and piano and was invited in 2019 to conduct violin masterclasses for Vantage Academy of Music of Hong Kong for students presenting a concert at Carnegie Hall in New York. During the COVID pandemic, he has produced a number of video concert presentations including complete virtual performances of Vivaldi's Gloria, Fauré's Requiem and Beethoven's Opferlied. His most recent collaboration with the San Jose Symphonic Choir was a virtual presentation of their tour concert program, an eclectic selection of mostly a cappella songs they typically perform when touring in the US and abroad. Besides his roles as performer and producer, Julian previously has contributed program notes for many Bay Area concerts. He has also been working with Tamami Honma as producer and sound engineer on her forthcoming recordings of the complete Beethoven Piano Sonatas.