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[personal profile] fidhle
Went to see Hilary Hahn, my favoritist violinist at present, who performed at the Kennedy Center yesterday evening. It was great. Hilary has commissioned 27 short pieces to be used as encores, and she played 9 of them during the concert, interspersed between the major works on the program, the Corelli Sonata No. 4, the Chaconne from Bach's Partita No. 2 for solo violin, and the Faure Sonata No. 1. Except for the Bach, this was all music that I had never heard before, so it was an excellent introduction to a lot of good music.

Hilary was ably accompanied by Cory Smythe on the piano, except, of course, during the Bach. Usually Hilary memorizes everything and doesn't use music in a concert, even in a recital. However, she did use music for some of the new encores she commissioned, leading to a few light moments when she had to place the music back in place on the stand after a breeze in the concert hall blew her music closed. It was actually fairly amazing to see her put the music back, while playing the piece. At the end of the first half of the concert, Hilary played the Bach Chaconne. Amazing performance for which she got a well deserved standing ovation.

Hilary commissioned 27 encores by various composers to increase the available repertory of encores for violinists, something which really hasn't been done much since the time of Fritz Kreisler. She is on a concert tour at present to introduce the encores, which I understand she has finished recording. The only rules she had were that the encores were to be no more than 5 minutes and for acoustic violin and piano. As a result, the encores are varied in style and content, from very modernistic to very lyrical. After the concert, Hilary signed cd's Got a chance to say hello and ask her why her violin case <https://twitter.com/violincase> doesn't come out a sign too, although how violin case would sign was a bit of a mystery. All in all a very satisfying evening.
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