Hilary Hahn, violin
Cory Smythe, piano

Hilary Hahn

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The Shenson Virtuosi Violin Series is made possible by Fred M. Levin and Nancy Livingston, the Shenson Foundation

Saturday, February 9
Herbst Theatre
Premium $80/$59/$39




Hilary hahn plays Bach: bourÉe (from partita No. 3)


FAURÉ: Sonata No. 1 in A Major, Opus 13
Chaconne from Partita No. 2 in D minor
Selections from In 27 Pieces: the Hilary Hahn Encores, interspersed throughout the program, including short works by RAMNATH, NEWTON HOWARD, DEL TREDICI, LANG, GARCIA ABRIL, BATES, ALI-ZADEH, YUN, TURNAGE, SILVESTROV and BARRETT

JEFF MYERS: The Angry Birds of Kauai

About This Performance

Hilary Hahn had already made a substantial name for herself in the music world by the time she decided to commission new, short pieces by living composers to add to the rich tradition and repertoire usually reserved for encores. The result was In 27 Pieces: the Hilary Hahn Encores and she brings a selection of them to the SF Performances recital stage, paired with iconic sonatas by Bach and Fauré.

Supported in part by a grant from the Bernard Osher Foundation.

Artist Biography

Violinist Hilary Hahn’s probing interpretations, technical virtuosity and commitment to new music have brought her love of classical music to a diverse audience. At age 32, her international fame and recognition, including two Grammys, multiple Diapason “d’Or of the Year” and “Preis der deutschen Schallplattenkritik” prizes, seven Echo Klassik awards, and the 2008 Classic FM / Gramophone Artist of the Year, are a testament to her talent and drive.

Hahn begins her 2012–13 season with performances throughout South America, Spain and Scandinavia. She appears with the London Philharmonic Orchestra and the Dallas Symphony playing Mozart’s Violin Concerto No. 5 and Korngold’s Violin Concerto in D Major, respectively. She will tour Europe with the Dallas Symphony later in the season. In January, Hahn will embark on a series of European recitals of Fauré, Bach, Corelli and pieces from her multi-year In 27 Pieces: the Hilary Hahn Encores project. February will see Hahn bow in a number of US cities including San Francisco, Washington, D.C., and Boston, among others. Hahn’s season continues with Sibelius’ Violin Concerto in D minor with the Seattle Symphony and Korngold’s Violin Concerto with the Philadelphia Orchestra in April and May. She will tour Japan in May and finish her regular season with appearances with the Vienna Philharmonic and the Spanish National Orchestra.

In the sixteen years since she began recording, Hahn has released fourteen feature albums on the Deutsche Grammophon and Sony labels, in addition to three DVDs, an Oscar-nominated movie soundtrack, an award-winning recording for children and various compilations. In repertoire as diverse as Bach, Stravinsky, Elgar, Beethoven, Vaughan Williams, Mozart, Schoenberg, Paganini, Spohr, Barber, Bernstein, Ives, Higdon, Tchaikovsky and others, her recordings have received every critical prize in the international press, and have met with equal popular success. All of her recordings have debuted in the top ten of the Billboard classical chart. A concerto recording, which paired Schoenberg and Sibelius, spent twenty-three weeks on the Billboard classical chart. This acclaimed album brought Hahn her second Grammy: the 2009 Award for Best Instrumental Soloist Performance with Orchestra. Her first Grammy win came in 2003 for her Brahms and Stravinsky concerto album. Hahn’s former teacher, composer Jennifer Higdon, wrote a Pulitzer Prize-winning concerto for her. The recording was released in September 2010. In October 2011, Hahn presented Charles Ives: Four Sonatas, with pianist Valentina Lisitsa. Hahn’s most recent album, Silfra, is a collaboration with prepared-pianist Hauschka. The record was produced by Valgeir Sigurðsson and was entirely improvised by the two performers. Her ongoing commissioning project, In 27 Pieces: the Hilary Hahn Encores, involves over two dozen of today’s top composers writing new short works for violin and piano. A blind contest for the 27th composer drew 400 entries. The premieres of the 27 final pieces will be completed in the 2012–2013 season and recorded for release in the 2013–2014 season.

Hahn has appeared on the covers of all major classical music publications and has been featured in mainstream periodicals such as Vogue, Elle, Town and Country and Marie Claire. In 2001, she was named “America’s Best Young Classical Musician” by Time magazine. And in January 2010 she appeared as guest artist, playing Bartok and Brahms, on The Tonight Show With Conan O’Brien.

An engaging personality, Hahn is an avid writer and interviewer, posting journal entries and information for young musicians and concertgoers on her website, hilaryhahn.com. In video, she produces a YouTube channel, youtube.com/hilaryhahnvideos, and serves as guest host for the contemporary classical music blog Sequenza21. Elsewhere, her violin case comments on life as a traveling companion, on Twitter and Instagram at @violincase. In addition, Hahn has participated in a number of other musical projects and collaborations. She has made guest appearances on two albums by the alt-rock band …And You Will Know Us By The Trail of Dead and on Grand Forks by Tom Brosseau, and she has collaborated and toured with folk-rock singer-songwriter Josh Ritter.


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