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Pauline Lerner

Is Hilary Hahn getting fishy?

October 6, 2011 at 6:10 AM

 Hilary Hahn recently posted a clip of herself interviewing a fish, but not a real fish.


Laurie Niles wrote about it in her blog on 9/25/11. Laurie has an interesting perspective as both a violinist and a journalist.


Now Hahn's fish video has been reviewed by a music critic, David Stearns.  He talks about the musician/reviewer relationship and tells some interesting stories about his own experiences.  Then he writes, "Until now, she has had a relatively sweet relationship with the news media….[but in her fish interview] she seems to mock the news media with surprisingly cheap shots."  This article was opened for comments, and Chris McGovernor, from, made several interesting comments, which appear on the site I referenced above.


I'm a great fan of Hilary Hahn.  I love her artistry as a violinist.  I also love  her communication with the public via Q&A sessions and autograph sessions after concerts, her blog, her Twitter posts, and her TV interviews.  I know that she started interacting with kids in the early part of her career, probably because she was a child prodigy and likes interacting with kids.  However, I do not like her fish interview.  I feel that she is getting too cute-sy.  I generally enjoy her posts on her Youtube channel, but now I wonder whether she has gone from being amiable and joyful to being just a little too cute. 


From Laurie Niles
Posted on October 6, 2011 at 3:23 PM

 I think she just has a bizarre sense of humor, but I like it. Next week I will run an interview with her, and we did speak about the fishies, so more to come on this!

From Terez Mertes
Posted on October 7, 2011 at 1:01 AM

 I must say, I scratched my head over it, and clicked it off midway. It struck me as one of those shows, like Fawlty Towers, from the UK (way back when) that made my husband laugh and laugh and I was stumped by what appealed to him. Wonderful that others had found appeal in it. Just not me. But then again, I just love watching John Cage's "4'33" performed, and boy, on YouTube, there are thousands of ppl who are complaining "I don't get it."

I do so value all Hilary has done for classical music and outreach, so I was reluctant to voice my thoughts on Laurie's blog. But.... well, here's my chance. Thanks for paving the way, Pauline.

From Laurie Niles
Posted on October 7, 2011 at 3:03 PM

 Do remember, this is the same person who hosted a "Schoenberger" recipe contest and tweets as her violin case! ;)

From Mendy Smith
Posted on October 8, 2011 at 2:46 AM

 I thought is was a humorous way to poke a little fun back on the media in a gentle manner and in good taste.    

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