Strings used by Hahn in this recording???

September 11, 2016 at 03:12 PM · I think I may have gone crazy or become color blind... Maybe both. But from looking at the silks on her instrument it almost seems like she's using Dominants and a pirastro gold e... Which is quite surprising.

Replies (9)

September 11, 2016 at 03:17 PM · That's exactly what she uses on her Vuillaume.

A lot of soloists use precisely that combination. The top-notch violins that are played by soloists don't need very much help from strings -- relatively low tension, neutral sound, and the Dominants do that just fine (with the usual swap of the E for the Pirastro Gold E).

September 11, 2016 at 05:35 PM · Works well with her lousy Vuillaume... it is only us with our great violins who are obsessed with Evah P!

September 11, 2016 at 05:39 PM · Dominant tensions are similar to Eudoxas. Many old instruments will vibrate more freely under hese conditions.

September 11, 2016 at 08:31 PM · Why is it surprising? Dominants are good strings.

September 11, 2016 at 09:13 PM · I have used Dominants for thirty five years although I woukd swap out their E for an Olive or Westminster or others. When they dramatically raised their price I switched to Warchal Brilliants and love the E string.

September 11, 2016 at 09:41 PM · Hahn's Vuillaume is a marvelous instrument - and the way she plays it. I've only heard her in concert once, but that was enough to make me a believer - and a follower!

Lydia, weren't you at that Hahn performance of the Elgar in Santa Rosa 15 years ago?

A few years ago the VSA (Violin Society of America) held a round table discussion of strings and Hilary Hahn's use of Dominants was discussed (and published in the VSA Journal) and the "fact" that she would put on a new set about 24 hours before each concert to get the "zing."- That's a lot of strings in any one year. I wonder who got the used ones. Actually Dominants appeared to be the baseline (gold standard ??) for that and any such discussion.

September 11, 2016 at 10:36 PM · I was! I was even with you. :-)

Not long after that, I was at a smaller concert in Saratoga where she played Brahms sonatas and hung out after her usual signing to talk to a number of local violinists. I heard her play her Vuillaume and a few other people's instruments at immediate distance. Her Vuillaume is beautiful, but it's not at the level of a great Strad.

I think her sound production has changed over the years. Specifically, back then, 15 years ago, she changed bow a *lot*. You might remember in the Elgar on those long notes, she would just take bow after bow, with the changes completely inaudible, so she produced massive volume because she had no need to conserve like anyone else would. That was the case in both her concerto performances and in sonatas. These days she doesn't do that any longer.

September 12, 2016 at 12:08 AM · Yes, I remember, "our little gang" met in the lobby and got our CDs signed by Hahn.

Her sound was so amazing; in the "duet" with the CM she essentially eclipsed his sound. A month later I saw Alisa Weilerstein play the Dvorak Cello Concerto in the same venue and in that "duet" section the CM's violin was more powerful than the cello - a clear indication of Hahn's dominant sound - Strad/Guarneri or not.

September 12, 2016 at 12:15 AM · "Hahn's dominant sound"

That pun must have been intended

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