Classical Music online - News, events, bios, music & videos on the web.

Classical music and opera by Classissima

Hilary Hahn

Monday, January 16, 2017


The Well-Tempered Ear

January 4

Classical music: Here are memorable local concerts in 2016 from critic John W. Barker and The Ear. What ones would you add?

The Well-Tempered EarALERT: The FREE Friday Noon Musicales at the First Unitarian Society of Madison , 900 University Bay Drive, resume this week after a break for Christmas, New Year’s and other holidays. This Friday, from 12:15 to 1 p.m., pianist Olivia Musat will perform music by Olivier Messiaen, Isaac Albeniz and Paul Constantinesco. By Jacob Stockinger It seems a tradition throughout the media to offer a roundup of the Year’s Best with a local slant. The Ear already offered a national and international roundup. Here is a link to that, especially to the surprisingly rich roundup that he unexpectedly found on Wikipedia: https://welltempered.wordpress.com/2017/01/02/classical-music-wikipedia-and-wfmt-in-chicago-offer-a-review-of-classical-music-of-2016-that-includes-important-performances-new-music-and-deaths/ For a more local perspective, The Ear trusts and generally agrees with critic John W. Barker (below), who writes frequently for this blog and more often for Isthmus. Here is a link to Barker’s list of memorable concerts in the Madison area, Because Isthmus mixes classical with other genres like pop, folk and jazz, you have to scroll down to “Classical cornucopia”: http://isthmus.com/music/year-in-music-2016/ Although I agree with all the concerts that Barker mentions, he left out some that The Ear really loved. One was the absolutely riveting and moving performance in November by the Madison Symphony Orchestra under John DeMain of the momentous Fifth Symphony by Dmitri Shostakovich. For example just about everything that the Pro Arte Quartet does at the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Music is first-rate and memorable, whether they play in Mills Hall or on “Sunday Afternoon Live From the Chazen Museum of Art.” But this past fall, a free noontime concert by the Pro Arte with legendary pianist Leon Fleisher especially stood out. Together (below), they performed the Piano Quintet in F Minor by Johannes Brahms – an unquestionable masterpiece in an unforgettable performance. The Ear would also add two events, both violin recitals, at the Wisconsin Union Theater . Last spring Hilary Hahn (below top, in a photo by Peter Miller) turned in a stunningly superb recital. Then this fall, superstar Joshua Bell (below bottom) did the same. Both artists displayed terrific musicality combined with terrific virtuosity in generous and first-rate, ambitious programs. He would add several summer concerts by the Bach Dancing and Dynamite Society, especially the sizzling dueling violin concert (below) where the BDDS interspersed “The Four Seasons” buy Antonio Vivaldi with “The Four Seasons in Buenos Aires” by Astor Piazzolla. The Ear would also add an experimental concert at which UW-Madison pianist Christopher Taylor (below) unveiled his reworked two-keyboard “Hyperpiano.” While the concert, which featured the “Goldberg” Variations by Johann Sebastian Bach , wasn’t successful musically, it certainly was intriguing, unusual and highly memorable, even with imperfect digital technology. And The Ear also recalls a fine concert by the Rhapsodie Quartet (below) of the Madison Symphony Orchestra at the Overture Center. And let’s not forget the University Opera’s production of “Falstaff” by Giuseppe Verdi that was impressively and successfully updated by director David Ronis to Hollywood. The Ear is sure there are more memorable concerts than escape him right now. Madison just features so much wonderful music-making in the course of a year. Moreover, The Ear is also sure you have your favorites – whether they are individual plays; small chamber music groups such as duos, string quartets and piano trios; larger ensembles like the Madison Symphony Orchestra and the Wisconsin Union Theater; or entire events like the UW Brass Festival. I am sure that fans of the innovative percussion group Clocks in Motion and the acclaimed Madison Choral Project have a concert or two to nominate. So please use the COMMENT section to tell us what were your most memorable classical concerts in Madison during 2016. The Ear wants to hear. Tagged: "Goldberg" Variations , Albeniz , Arts , Ástor Piazzolla , Bach , Bach Dancing and Dynamite Society , Baroque , BDDS , brass , Brass Festival , Cello , Chamber music , Chazen Museum of Art , choral music , Christmas , Christopher Taylor , Classical music , Clocks in Motion , concerto , David Ronis , digital , duets , duo , Early music , Falstaff , First Unitarian Society of Madison , folk , Four Seasons , Four Seasons of Buenos Aires , Franz Schubert , Hilary Hahn , Holiday , Hollywood , Hyperpiano , Isthmus , Jacob Stockinger , Jazz , Johann Sebastian Bach , Johannes Brahms , John DeMain , John Wilbye , Joshua Bell , Ludwig van Beethoven , Madison , Madison Choral Project , Madison Opera , Madison Symphony Orchestra , Messiaen , Mozart , Music , New Year , New Year's , opera , Orchestra , Overture Center , Paul Constantinesco , percussion , Piano , pop , Pro Arte Quartet , Quartet , quintet , Shakespeare , Shostakovich , Sonata , String quartet , Sunday Afternoon Live From the Chazen , symphony , technology , trio , United States , University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Music , University of Wisconsin–Madison , University Opera , Verdi , Viola , Violin , Vivaldi , vocal music , Wisconsin , Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra , Wisconsin Union Theater , Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

The Well-Tempered Ear

December 16

Classical music: The accomplished and mostly amateur Middleton Community Orchestra will give its holiday concert of works by Mendelssohn, Dvorak and Brahms on Wednesday night, Dec. 21.

By Jacob Stockinger The acclaimed and mostly amateur Middleton Community Orchestra (below top) will present its holiday concert on next Wednesday, Dec. 21, at 7:30 p.m. at the Middleton Performing Arts Center (below) that is attached to Middleton High School . General admission is $15. Students are admitted free of charge. Tickets are available at the door and at Willy St. Coop West. For more information, call (608) 212-8690. The box office opens at 7 p.m. The husband-and-wife team of conductor Kyle Knox (below top) and violinist Naha Greenholtz (below bottom), will be the featured performers. Knox is a graduate student at the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Music and Greenholtz is the concertmaster of the Madison Symphony Orchestra . The program includes selected “Slavonic Dances ” by Antonin Dvorak ; the popular Violin Concerto in E minor by Felix Mendelssohn , with soloist Naha Greenholtz; and the Symphony No. 2 by Johannes Brahms . (You can hear the Mendelssohn Violin Concerto, with Hilary Hahn, in the YouTube video at the bottom.) A free informal meet-and-greet receptions follow the concert. For more information about the Middleton Community Orchestra, including its upcoming concerts and opportunities to join it and support it, go to: http://www.middletoncommunityorchestra.org Tagged: amateur , Arts , Cello , Chamber music , Classical music , concerto , dance , Dvorak , Felix Mendelssohn , Hilary Hahn , Jacob Stockinger , Johannes Brahms , Madison , Madison Symphony Orchestra , Mendelssohn , Music , Orchestra , reception , Slavonic Dances , symphony , United States , University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Music , University of Wisconsin–Madison , Viola , Violin , Violin concerto , Wisconsin , YouTube




The Well-Tempered Ear

December 1

Classical music: This is a very busy weekend for FREE choral music, band music, chamber music, a brass master class and a Berlioz colloquium at the UW-Madison.

By Jacob Stockinger This is the time of the academic year, the end of a semester, when performers and venues at the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Music really get a workout. Take this weekend and especially this coming Sunday, which features seven events. There will be two popular Winter Choral Concerts at Luther Memorial Church , 1026 University Avenue (below in 2014) plus performances by the Concert Band and University Bands and a couple of recitals by students. Mills Hall, Morphy Hall and Music Hall will all be in use. Here is a link to the full Sunday schedule with information about the many concerts, but which, unfortunately, does NOT include programs for the choral concerts and a band concert: http://www.music.wisc.edu/events/2016-12-04/ This Friday and Saturday are also busy, though less so. FRIDAY At 4 p.m. in Room 2441 of the Mosse Humanities Building is a FREE public colloquium about the pioneering Romantic French composer Hector Berlioz (below). Here is a description by the presenter, Professor Francesca Brittan of Case Western Reserve University : “Against Melody: Neology, Revolution, and Berliozian Fantasy.” “Complaints levied against Hector Berlioz’s music during his lifetime (and after) were many: deafening, terrifying, “too literary,” “too imitative.” But by far the most pervasive anxiety voiced by critics revolved around Berlioz’s illegibility. In particular, his music was ungrammatical, failing to adhere to the rules of syntax, the tenets of “proper” melody, and the laws of rhythm. “These were not just idle or irritated complaints but urgent ones, linked by 19th-century critics to fears of social unraveling and even revolutionary violence. Berlioz’s musico-linguistic perversion, as one reviewer put it, was tantamount to Jacobinism. This strand of the criticism began in earnest with the “Symphonie fantastique,” a work that usually claims our attention for its orchestrational innovations and autobiographical resonances. “In this talk, I redirect attention to the symphony’s syntax, arguing that melodic-linguistic deformation was at the heart of the work’s radicalism. I link Berlioz’s notions of “natural” grammar (borrowed in part from Victor Hugo) to notions of “natural” sound, and the “natural” rights of man. More broadly, I examine relationships among grammar, revolution, and 19th-century fantasy, between musical neology and the Berliozian imaginary.” The event is funded by the University Lectures Anonymous Fund. For more about Francesca Brittan (below) go to: http://music.case.edu/faculty/francesca-brittan/ At 6:30 p.m. in Morphy Recital Hall, a student brass quintet will perform a FREE concert of music by Johann Sebastian Bach , Malcolm Arnold, Kevin McKee and Victor Ewald . Performers are Nicole Gray, Brandi Pease, Kirsten Haukness, Hayden Victor and Michael Madden. At 8 p.m. in Mills Hall is a FREE public master class with David Wakefield (below), a former member of the American Brass Quintet who now teaches at The Hartt School . Sorry, no program of works to be played. At 8:30 p.m. in Morphy Recital Hall is a FREE graduate student concert of chamber music by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart . Rayna Slavova is a second-year Doctor of Musical Arts (DMA) student in collaborative piano, studying with professor Martha Fischer. The all-Mozart program includes the Violin Sonata in F, K. 376, with Biffa Kwok, violin (an excerpt, played by Hilary Hahn, can be heard in the YouTube video at the bottom); the Piano Duo Sonata in C, K 521, with Alberto Pena, piano; and the Piano Quintet in E flat, K 452, with Juliana Mesa, bassoon, Kai-Ju Ho, clarinet, and Dafydd Bevil, horn. SATURDAY At 4 p.m. in Mills Hall, the University Strings – made up of talented non-music majors — will play a FREE concert. Sorry, no news about the program. At 4 p.m. in Morphy Recital Hall is a FREE Fall concert by the Flute Studio at the UW-Madison. Sorry, no word about the program or players. At 8:30 p.m. in Morphy Recital in a FREE recital by Seth Bixler who is a senior violinist studying with Professor Soh-Hyun Altino. He will perform works by Johann Sebastian Bach, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Peter Tchaikovsky and Eugene Ysaye. Tagged: American Brass Quintet , anxiety , Arts , autobiography , Bach , band , Bassoon , Berlioz , brass , Case Western Reserve University , Cello , Chamber music , choral music , clarinet , Classical music , colloquium , Concert , critic , David Wakefield , duet , duo , flute , Francesca Brittan , grammar , Hilary Hahn , Horn , imaginary , innovation , Jacob Stockinger , Jacobinism , Johann Sebastian Bach , Johannes Brahms , Kevin McKee , law , laws , linguistic , Madison , Malcolm Arnold , man , master class , melody , Mozart , Music , natural , natural rights , Orchestra , Piano , piano duo , Piano Quintet , quintet , Ravel , recital , revolution , rhythm , rights , rights of man , Romantic , Romanticism , Sonata , Sound , symphony , Symphony fantastique , syntax , Tchaikovsky , The Hartt School , United States , University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Music , University of Wisconsin–Madison , Victor Ewald , Victor Hugo , Viola , violence , Violin , vocal music , Wisconsin , Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart , YouTube , Ysaye



The Well-Tempered Ear

September 18

Classical music: Which violin concertos have the hardest openings? You may be surprised

By Jacob Stockinger Recently The Ear stumbled upon a fascinating story, on a blog by Nathan Cole, about famous violin concertos. It was NOT about the Top 10 Best Violin Concertos ranked in order. It was NOT about the Top 10 Most Difficult Violin Concertos. It was simply about the most difficult openings of violin concertos – about what happens when the violinist walks on stage and starts up along with the orchestra or before it or after it. It uses the Olympics sports competitions as a model and awards degrees of difficulty along with explanations for the scoring. (For a close to simultaneous start by orchestra and soloist, listen to American violinist Hillary Hahn , who played a recital last spring at the Wisconsin Union Theater , and conductor Pavvo Jarvi in the opening of the popular Violin Concerto in E Minor by Felix Mendelssohn in the YouTube video at the bottom. It has over 8 million hits and it is very relevant to the story.) The story reminds The Ear of famous literary critic Frank Kermode ’s classic book “The Sense of an Ending” — only now it would be “The Sense of a Beginning,” a subject the late literary critic, cultural analyst and Palestinian activist Edward Said wrote about in his book “Beginnings: Intention and Method.” The musical discussion features accessible and informative analysis by an accomplished violinist as well as terrific audio-visual clips of each concerto and opening in questions. It’s a long piece – good for weekend reading, perhaps because it can be done in different segments at different times. But even if you read only a part of it, it certainly imparts a sense of the challenges that a soloist faces. You vicariously experience the thrill and intimidation of walking out on stage and starting to play. And it enhances your appreciation of some famous violin concertos and of what it takes to pull them off in live performance. Like The Ear, you will come away with a new appreciation of the challenges that any concerto soloist – violinist, pianist, cellist, brass player, wind player, whatever — faces. Here is a link: http://www.violinist.com/blog/ncole78/20169/19726/ The Ear also hopes the website violinist.com follows up with a listing or ranking of the most difficult ENDINGS of violin concertos and a discussion of what makes them so difficult. In the meantime, The Ears asks: Do violinists out there agree or disagree with the scoring and reasons? Do they care to leave a comment one way or the other? Do they have other candidates – say, Baroque concertos by Antonio Vivaldi or Johann Sebastian Bach — to rank for the difficult of starting? The Ear wants to hear. Tagged: Alexander Glazunov , Arts , Bach , Baroque , Bartok , Beethoven , Berg , blog , Brahms , brass , Bruch , Cello , Chamber music , Classical music , comeptition , Compact Disc , concerto , Dvorak , Felix Mendelssohn , Henryk Wieniawski , Hilary Hahn , Jacob Stockinger , Johann Sebastian Bach , Johannes Brahms , Lalo , Ludwig van Beethoven , Madison , Mendelssohn , Mozart , Music , Olympic , Olympics , Orchestra , Paganini , Pavvo Jarvi , Piano , Prokofiev , Sibelius , Sport , Stravinsky , strings , symphony , United States , University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Music , University of Wisconsin–Madison , Violin , Violin concerto , Violin Concerto (Mendelssohn) , Vivaldi , Website , winds , Wisconsin , Wisconsin Union Theater , Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart , YouTube

Hilary Hahn

Hilary Hahn (November 27, 1979) is an American violinist. Beginning her studies when she was three years old, she was admitted to the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia at age ten, and in 1991, made her major orchestral debut with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra. Hahn signed her first musical recording contract at age sixteen. She graduated from the Curtis Institute in May 1999 with a Bachelor of Music degree.



[+] More news (Hilary Hahn)
Oct 21
Norman Lebrecht -...
Oct 9
The Glass
Oct 5
My Classical Notes
Sep 18
Norman Lebrecht -...
Sep 16
Norman Lebrecht -...
Sep 2
My Classical Notes
Aug 10
My Classical Notes
Jul 23
Norman Lebrecht -...
Jun 22
My Classical Notes
May 2
The Well-Tempered...
May 2
Wordpress Sphere
Mar 16
Joe's Concert Rev...
Mar 2
Joe's Concert Rev...
Feb 23
My Classical Notes
Feb 21
Wordpress Sphere
Feb 8
Wordpress Sphere
Jan 30
My Classical Notes
Jan 24
Wordpress Sphere
Jan 15
The Glass
Jan 13
La Scena Musicale

Hilary Hahn
English (UK) Spanish French German Italian




Hahn on the web...



Hilary Hahn »

Great performers

Violin Paganini Bach Violin Concertos

Since January 2009, Classissima has simplified access to classical music and enlarged its audience.
With innovative sections, Classissima assists newbies and classical music lovers in their web experience.


Great conductors, Great performers, Great opera singers
 
Great composers of classical music
Bach
Beethoven
Brahms
Debussy
Dvorak
Handel
Mendelsohn
Mozart
Ravel
Schubert
Tchaikovsky
Verdi
Vivaldi
Wagner
[...]


Explore 10 centuries in classical music...