Hilary Hahn’s disciplined approach to creativity

Posted on: October 26, 2016

“Hilary Hahn, now 36 … is one of the most creative, illuminating violinists of our time—and one of the most methodical,” writes Anne Midgette in Friday’s (10/21) Washington Post. Hahn and pianist Robert Levin perform at the Kennedy Center on October 28. “ ‘She was such a conscientious student,’ says composer Jennifer Higdon, who taught a course about contemporary composition when Hahn was an undergraduate at the Curtis Institute. Many years later, Higdon wrote her Violin Concerto for Hahn, with repeated encouragement, on Hahn’s part, to make the piece even harder.… Hahn has taken the same calculated, inquisitive approach to exploring creativity—both through improvisation, which she has pursued for a number of years, and through new works.… Offstage and on, Hahn stands out for her directness. … She is at once open, friendly and a little reserved. ‘I’ve never loved composing,’ she says, ‘because I feel like other people do it better…. I do think, though, that I’m getting to a point where getting closer and closer to that, for myself, it’s part of that whole process of trying to understand how a composer creates.… It could be really personally rewarding.’ ”

Posted October 26, 2016