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Hilary Hahn, Again with the Encores

Charles T. Downey, Violinist Hilary Hahn’s new encores served as musical dessert at Kennedy Center
Washington Post, February 18, 2013

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Bach, Solo Violin Partitas, H. Hahn
Encores come in a few standard shapes and sizes: the ardent, lyrical cantilena; the short, vapid bit of pure virtuosity; something more enigmatic or contrapuntal. Violinist Hilary Hahn wanted to expand her range of encore choices, so she commissioned a set of new encore pieces from composers around the world. Her recital on Saturday night, presented by the Washington Performing Arts Society in the Kennedy Center Concert Hall, featured the Washington premieres of some of them.

The encore has a special place, offered by the performer as a gift to the listener and sometimes mentioned but generally not reviewed by critics. It is often a way for musicians to play music they normally would not include in a serious program, as a guilty pleasure. It is not necessarily something one associates with new music that might not sit well with all listeners, and that is the challenge facing Hahn’s project. [Continue reading]

Lawrence Budman, Hilary Hahn mixes old and new with supreme artistry (South Florida Classical Review, February 15)

Joshua Kosman, Hahn at the Herbst, Shaham at Davies (San Francisco Chronicle, February 10)

Jeff Dunn, Hilary Hahn Shines Light on Delicacies (San Francisco Classical Voice, February 9)

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