Twoset Violin x Hilary Hahn: Classical Music Gamified and Diversified

Guessing Games, tier lists and bubble tea reviews – all that would not be commonly associated with classical music. Strangely enough, these topics are all brought together by  Twoset Violin and Hilary Hahn.

This  YouTube Channel is operated by two young Australian violinists, Brett Yang and Eddy Chen. Twoset recent collaborations with world-renowned violinist Hilary Hahn drew 281,000 views with an enticing guessing game that challenges musicians to play music with 10 different emotions. The video brought invested musicians and strangers of classical music together with some shared laughter.

Collaborations like this are bringing a new generation of music lovers into the classical music community. 

When we think of classical music, many imagine an elaborate concert hall of gray-haired listeners in dead silence. But as Eddy, Brett and Hilary Hahn spin the charade wheel and casually play excerpts of challenging repertoires in laughter, waves of young classical music enthusiasts are now filing into concert halls to share the joy of music.

In addition to diversifying the classical music community, Twoset Violin advocates for a healthy practice-rest balance for aspiring musicians with bubble tea reviews, DIV vlogs, and Mukbang videos. Joined by celebrated violinists such as Hilary Hahn,  videos seem to be off-topic from the theme of the channel, the art of the violin. However,they teach a valuable lesson for hard-working musicians and other professionals to destress and detach from intensive practice sessions or work periodically. As accomplished musicians who once struggled with mental health too, Twoset Violin furthers their cause by performing alongside Hilary Hahn on July 30th, 2021.

Taking the stage of Sydney Opera House, Twoset violin performed Antonin Dvorak’s Gavotte for Three Opera, as guest artists to Hilary Hahn’s closing encore, winning a hall full of cheers with their moving trio that was put together in less than 24 hours!

Reflecting on the surprise collaboration, Eddy and Brett candidly described the stress that they experienced in their recent video.

“We literally rehearsed on the day,” Eddy recalled. “I practiced so hard.”

“It was a piece [that] normally you can just sightread,” Brett added. “It was like, overkill.”

Despite being high-achieving professionals who graduated from Queensland Conservatorium with prestigious scholarships and awards, Brett and Eddy have warmed the hearts of many with vulnerability and humility – breaking the old-school disregard for mental health needs in the classical music world and beyond.

Moreover, as mentioned throughout the article, Twoset Violin is not alone in its effort to expand and improve the classical music community. Violinist Hilary Hahn, a Curtis Institute graduate ( a distinguished music conservatory with an admission rate of two percent) who made her first debut as a soloist at the age of 15, gives a helping hand in her and Twoset Violin’s common mission by featuring in various video, concerts, and Instagram interactions – with casual interviews, charades, and interactive posts. Together, this spirit of generosity and passion has inspired 3.83 million subscribers on YouTube and 819,000 followers on Instagram to break the stigma and find entertainment and personal expression in classical music.

From a channel sparked by an instance of creativity to sharing the stage with Hilary Hahn, Twoset Violin’s pioneering journey is far from the end. In fact, Twoset Violin is hosting its first-ever orchestra-accompanied concert in celebration of soon reaching 4 million subscribers. Brett’s promised Mendelssohn Violin concerto performance is 2 months away, scheduled in Victoria Concert Hall and accompanied by the Singapore Symphony Orchestra. With this sold-out concert and more upcoming collaborations, Twoset Violin opens their next chapter to a widening world stage of music lovers. 

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