Home » Stories » Hilary Hahn, Igor Levit, Magos Herrera, Brooklyn Rider, BSO-Nelsons makes Zoe Madonna's 'best classical albums of 2018' / The Boston Globe

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Hilary Hahn, Igor Levit, Magos Herrera, Brooklyn Rider, BSO-Nelsons makes Zoe Madonna's 'best classical albums of 2018' / The Boston Globe

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Hilary Hahn, violin It's not quite right to say that the violinist is rekindling an old flame, completing the cycle of Bach sonatas and partitas over two decades after beginning it with her debut recording as a teenage star ascending. Through the years, Bach has consistently been her north star, and this recording feels like a homecoming. Hahn performs with her signature precise passion, touching many phrases with an almost Romantic glow.

Igor Levit, piano Recorded in response to the sudden death of a close friend, Levit's up-close meditations on life, death, and love strike an unforgettable chord. Wagner's Solemn March to the Holy Grail from "Parsifal" distills to a private prayer under Levit's hands, in a piano transcription by Liszt. On his Twitter, @igorpianist, he brings listeners into his world with videos taken from one end of the piano; "Life" takes that a step further, creating the sensation that the listener is seated at the keyboard alongside him.

Magos Herrera & Brooklyn Rider To be a dreamer is now political. A Mexican jazz singer teams up with an American classical string quartet for an album that knows neither walls nor borders. Herrera's smoky single-malt voice wends its way through the words of poets including Octavio Paz, Federico García Lorca, and Violeta Parra; on the wordless "Milonga Gris," she vocalizes with the electric verve of a tenor saxophone.

Boston Symphony Orchestra; Andris Nelsons, conductor The BSO and its music director continue their ongoing Shostakovich cycle with this handsome two-disc set recorded at Symphony Hall, in which the composer's flair for the dramatic is given exciting, puissant treatment. Caution: Listening may result in your being rooted in place until finished, and both symphonies run about an hour.

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