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Higdon & Tchaikovsky Violin Concertos
Hilary Hahn
Higdon & Tchaikovsky Violin Concertos
Genre: Classical
The two-time Grammy winning violinist releases the world-premiere recording of Jennifer Higdon's 2010 Pulitzer Prize winning concerto, paired with the popular Tchaikovsky concerto.


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CD Details

All Artists: Hilary Hahn
Title: Higdon & Tchaikovsky Violin Concertos
Members Wishing: 6
Total Copies: 0
Label: Deutsche Grammophon
Release Date: 9/21/2010
Genre: Classical
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPCs: 028947787778, 028947787778


Product Description
The two-time Grammy winning violinist releases the world-premiere recording of Jennifer Higdon's 2010 Pulitzer Prize winning concerto, paired with the popular Tchaikovsky concerto.

CD Reviews

Hidgon and Tchaikovsky Should Be Proud
H. D. | CA | 09/21/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Hilary Hahn, once again, gracefully proves her fearless and mature artistry through the daunting Higdon concerto and the very well-known Tchaikovsky concerto. It is clear that Hahn never settles for mere virtuosic ostentation. Turning away from the gaudy approach that many violinists take toward the Tchaikovsky concerto, Hahn delves into the music and interprets it in a restrained but most heartfelt manner. She doesn't wrestle with the piece; she dances with it and lets it speak for itself. The Higdon concerto is just wonderful. It captures Hahn's energy and artistic consistency very well. Throughout the two concerti, Hahn can be seen as either Athena in a tough battle shining with her wisdom and perfect control or a young lady in an idyllic landscape embodying purity and evoking nostalgia. Hahn's versatility is admirable.

It is, however, unfortunate that some listeners can't pick up this beautiful music in the noise of their prejudices. Some can't get over Hahn's physical youth and something as absurd as their own resistance to the Tchaikovsky concerto's popularity, to judge the music for what it is. I encourage you to listen to the music with an open mind and appreciate what Hahn has accomplished with this recording."
Something new and something newer
Mark Van Vlack | new york | 09/21/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I would normally only talk in a review about my visceral observations of the performance as the Classical piece being played is often well known. This is surely true of the Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto. However, since the Higdon Violin Concerto is enjoying its premier recording on this CD, it may be necessary for me to break my own rule this once.
The Higdon Concerto is done on a grand scale. It is modern in style (meaning you aren't going to be whistling it anywhere) but its subtle melodies are never obscured by the type of ugly discordance found in much of the non-romantic modern repertoire. The piece has a tremendous amount of power and energy that brought me many a smile on my initial hearing.
I also must say that if I did not have a hearing aid I would surely not have heard most of the beginning of the first movement as it is full of harmonics way above my age-onset hearing loss. The third movement is exciting, played at a breakneck pace that may have been inspired by Miss Hahn's performance of the Barber third movement. Jennifer Higdon was right when she said that it sounds like Miss Hahn plays the third movement of her (Higdon's) concerto as if she had six fingers! As for its beauty, you can judge for yourself. Music is felt in the soul and many parts of this piece touched mine.
As for Hilary Hahn's performance of both pieces she is in typically amazing form. The phrasing, tonality and technique in these pieces are flawless and inspiring. She has the refreshing ability to put the music above her virtuosity and turn the technically monstrous passages into beautiful and graceful compliments to the spirit of the piece she is playing.
Many have commented that the Violin in Tchaikovsky's concerto was not written in a "violinistic" fashion. Miss Hahn proves them wrong and then some. What a wonderfully different listen this concerto is to the many interpretations I have heard over the years. She chose to play the original Tchaikovsky score rather than the Leopold Auer version so often used in the general repertoire (possibly for the criticisms mentioned at the start of this paragraph). I think her interpretation may inspire future violinist to consider the composers version of this piece as she points sign-posts in a fascinating and beautiful direction.
For the low price of this cd on Amazon, it would be a shame not to own it. The Tchaikovsky alone is worth the price of admission!

Hahn, Higdon, And Tchaikovsky
Erik North | San Gabriel, CA USA | 09/26/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Hilary Hahn is, without too much question, one of America's most prominent classical musicians of recent times. Her repertoire in both concerts and recordings ranges far and wide, from the various Bach concertos she recorded a few years ago with Jeffrey Kahane and the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, to the big ones by Beethoven, Brahms, and Mendelssohn, and the early 20th century masterpieces by Schoenberg and Stravinsky. On this particular recording, she cagily combines another warhorse of the concerto repertoire with a brand-new concerto by one of America's greatest composers of contemporary classical music.

The new work, in this case, is the 2008 Violin Concerto by Jennifer Higdon, a work that won the 2010 Pulitzer Prize for music. It is an exquisite and energetic piece, done in the traditional three-movement concerto form but without the traditional tempo markings; instead, the movements are marked with titles: "1726"; "Chacconi"; and "Fly Forward", and the vivid orchestration includes the glockenspiel, an instrument not heard everyday in orchestras much anymore. The warhorse on this recording, meanwhile, is the D Major violin concerto of Tchaikovsky, indisputably up there with its Austro-German predecessors as a must-do for any violinist worth his or her salt. Its popularity is amazing, given the fact that Leopold Auer, the violinist to whom the concerto was originally dedicated in 1878, declared the piece unplayable, thus delaying its world premiere for three years. It is indeed a fiendishly difficult work to play, especially in the rapid-fire finale; and the fact that every great violinist has had to tackle it in concerts and on recordings means the stakes are raised ever higher for the next violinist.

Ms. Hahn, however, is more than up to the challenge on this recording, where, despite the 130-year difference between them, both the Tchaikovsky and Higdon violin concertos fit very well. She is ably assisted by England's Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra and their Russian-born music director Vasily Petrenko, The end result is not only one of the great classical recordings for 2010, but certainly among the best recordings from any genre this year."