1. How long have you been composing?
I wrote my first composition when I was 10 years old. It was a opusculum for one voice only. Before I started composing concert music at the Xinghai Conservatory of Music in China, I had been a Mandopop singer and songwriter.
2. Who/what gave you the passion to pursue it as a career? Why? How?
I think I never considered music as a career. I can still remember when I was 11, I was accepted to the Canton Dance Academy as a Latin Dance major student. My parents, however, were against the idea because the school wouldn’t offer enough general education courses. I realized no matter which path I chose, music would always be apart of my life, but, I still never considered music as a future career. It was more like a close friend to me and would always be apart of me. It happens to be this way for many reasons. I believe that all the experiences in my life paved the path for who I am today.
3. What do you like most about the repertoire on this upcoming concert?
I love the diversity of this program! Where else can you find music composed in the 1750’s and also have contemporary living composers give a “hat tip” to those very works in their own musical way? What a great concept.
4. Outside of music, what do you love about Philadelphia?
There is no other city like the birthplace of America, Philadelphia. I love that you can find history packed in all the nooks of the city. The history, art, and cultures blending together in a creative way. The Philadelphia Mural Arts program is a perfect example of this.
5. Do you have a favorite Philadelphia restaurant?
Sang Kee Peking Duck House
6. Favorite Philadelphia attraction?
7. Favorite Philadelphia food?
Biscuit & Gravy at the La Colombe in Fishtown.
8. Describe your perfect day off.
I usually go to Kelly Drive with friends, especially the area around the Philadelphia Museum of Art. We like to take walks along the Schuylkill River Trail and hang out with the geese.
9. What music do you listen to? If something other than classical, what?
I listen to all kinds of music, such as classical, electronics, indie rock, ambient music, pop, and movie soundtracks. Recently, I have been listening to Paul Lanky and Radiohead.
10. Do you miss your hometown? Do you still talk with childhood friends?
Yes. I still keep in touch with a few friends from my childhood. Every time we gather together we recall the times we climbed on the trees and picked wax jambu.
11. If you could have been anything other than a musician, what would that be and why?
I want to be a doctor. I want to help people. Music can heal, for sure. In general comparison, music’s healing impact is implicit, internal, and abstract. It touches your heart and soul. Whereas medical treatment has more of a direct and physical impact.