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6 Degrees Entertainment

Title - 'Retrospective'
Artist - Hilary Hahn

Uber talented American violinist Hilary Hahn recently released the quite stunning Retrospective via Deutsche Grammophon, and rightfully so it's already grabbing the musical headlines for its candidness and emotional content.

The 2CD album showcases all of her recordings for Deutsche Grammophon, along with new, unedited live performance recordings, which provide the full immediacy of the concert experience.

1.-3. "Violin Sonata in G major K 379", Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756–1791)†
4. "Blue Curve of the Earth", Tina Davidson (1952)†
5. "Mercy", Max Richter (1966)†
6. "Double Concerto for 2 Violins, Strings and Continuo in D major BWV 1043", J. S. Bach (1685–1750) – ii Largo ma non tanto
7. "The Lark Ascending", Ralph Vaughan Williams (1872–1958)
8. "Sonata for Violin and Piano in A major K 526", Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756–1791) – iii Presto
9. "Violin Concerto No. 1 in D major op. 6", Niccolò Paganini (1782–1840) – iii Rondo

CD 2:
1. "Violin Concerto op. 36", Arnold Schoenberg (1874–1951) – i Poco Allegro
2. "St Matthew Passion", J. S. Bach (1685–1750) – ii Aria: Gebt mir meinen Jesum wieder
3. "Violin Concerto" (Dedicated to Hilary Hahn), Jennifer Higdon (1962) – i 1726
4. "Sonata for Violin and Piano No. 1", Charles Ives (1874–1954) – i Andante – Allegro vivace
5. "Godot", Hahn & Hauschka
6. "When A Tiger Meets A Rosa Rugosa", Du Yun (1977)
7. "Two Voices", Nico Muhly (1981)
8. "Violin Concerto No. 4 in D minor op. 31", Henri Vieuxtemps (1820–1881) – ii Adagio religioso

LP 1:
1.-3. "Violin Sonata in G major K 379", Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756–1791)†
4. "Hilary’s Hoedown", Mark Anthony Turnage (1960)†
5. "Mercy", Max Richter (1966)†

LP 2:>br> 1. "The Lark Ascending", Ralph Vaughan Williams (1872–1958)
2. "Violin Concerto op. 36", Arnold Schoenberg (1874–1951) – i Poco Allegro
3. "St Matthew Passion", J. S. Bach (1685–1750) – ii Aria: Gebt mir meinen Jesum wieder
4. "Violin Concerto" (Dedicated to Hilary Hahn), Jennifer Higdon (1962) – iii Fly Forward
5. "Stillness", Hahn & Hauschka
6. "Speak, Memory", Lera Auerbach (1973)
7. "Memory Games", Avner Dorman (1975)
8. "Violin Concerto No. 4 in D minor op. 31", Henri Vieuxtemps (1820–1881) – ii Adagio religioso

† New Live Recordings

Note on LP 1: The Mozart sonata was recorded at a live performance and cut directly to the master disc.

This wondrous collection includes at least one track from each of her 12 Deutsche Grammophon albums and live recordings from Hahn's Meistersaal concert in Berlin, an event especially dedicated to her fans.

The recording includes the live performance of Mozart's Sonata KV 379, in addition to Max Richter's “Mercy” and Tina Davidson's “Blue Curve of the Earth,” with pianist Cory Smythe, from In 27 Pieces: the Hilary Hahn Encores.

The double-disc LP version, which has fewer tracks overall but incorporates some additional favorite tracks, replaces “Blue Curve of the Earth” with the live recording of Mark-Anthony Turnage's “Hilary’s Hoedown,” which is also from her Encores project.

So, and explaining this a little better, while one of the LPs contains the previously-recorded pieces, the other LP features a live 2016 performance of Hilary in recital with pianist Cory (Smythe), performing Mozart's Sonata For Piano And Violin In G Major, K.379 as well as two pieces from her Encores album, "Hilary’s Hoedown" by Mark-Anthony Turnage and "Mercy" by Max Richter.

In assembling this compilation, she listened to all of her DG recordings from beginning to end and realized that certain movements and pieces resonated particularly strongly with her musical trajectory.

In truth, having the first movement here on vinyl is a real treat, and, to me, a further step up in sound reproduction quality. I also enjoyed her SACD release of The Lark Ascending. I have several recording of that piece as I enjoy it a great deal and like hers best, so finally having it on vinyl is also a real treat, for the same reasons.

But, and I cannot assume that this is just my humble option, but "The Mozart Sonata" is just so beautiful. This track is almost worth the cost of the recording. Such technique and emotion showcases, even at Hahn's young age, that of a true master.

With the artwork for the album sourced from Hahn's very own fans, this makes this coming together of her best material something very, very special. Indeed, the 2LP version was recorded in the rare direct-to-disc technique which gives it that unique vinyl-only sound quality.

FYI: Until the 1940s most sound recordings were made by cutting directly to a master disc. With the direct-to-disc recording process used for LP 1 in the present release, Hilary Hahn has confronted the artistic and technical challenge involved in this particular recording technique.

Ergo, this is a technique that is nowadays used extremely rarely, not least because few artists have the requisite ability that such a direct-to-disc recording process necessarily presupposes. [JH]

2CD Purchase Link

2LP Purchase Link