There's no better way to celebrate a new music building than with a little bit of music. This weekend, the UT School of Music is doing just that.

The UT School of Music will present the first part of a concert series of Beethoven's sonatas for violin and piano on Sunday. The concert is located in the Sandra G. Powell Recital Hall at 8 p.m. and will feature the piano performance of Kevin Class, Ph.D, associate professor of collaborative piano, as well as several violinists from the Knoxville Symphony.

According to Class, the series will allow students to connect with Beethoven and his works.

"The music of Beethoven has a certain appeal to people," Class said. "A lot of Beethoven's music is a part of our world, and I think people are able to respond to the blatant drama and fury of his sound."

Freshman exploratory student Grace Belt agrees that many students will be able to connect with Beethoven's pieces.

"You don't have to be a musician to enjoy Beethoven's sonatas," Belt said. "Everyone can relate to the energy and emotion that is evident in his music."

Belt said that the free concert is a great opportunity for students to get a glimpse at the talent and culture that is a part of the Knoxville community.

"You get the chance to see many professional musicians all in one place," she said. "You can just walk across campus to see an outstanding concert."

Class said he has ordered the sonatas so that the audience will get to hear a variety of Beethoven's emotions at each concert.

"I've mixed the sonatas up so that you can get this huge cross-sampling of what Beethoven does with this specific genre," Class said. "You'll get to hear how his emotions migrate, and that makes the program seem very diverse."

In addition to enjoying these pieces, students will be able to attend a pre-concert lecture given by musicology graduate student Tyler Mitchell at 7:30 p.m. Class said that the lecture will provide students with more insight into Beethoven and his work.

"Some people like to have a little background information on what they're hearing," Class said. "The lecture will provide information on the specific sonatas that are going to be presented and tell people the story behind them."

Belt, who plays the viola, said she thinks the lecture will be a wonderful chance for students to mentally prepare for the concert.

"It's always beneficial to know a little history of the piece before a performance," she said. "It prepares your brain to catch a tone or character that would normally slip past you in the music, and you become more alert."

Overall, Class said he hopes that performance will not only allow attendees to experience Beethoven's energy, but that it will also have a positive impact on the UT community.

"We always like to think that what we do is significant," Class said. "I think that what we do as musicians has a positive effect on people, and that's an incredibly gratifying realization to have."