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Chinese pianist Lang Lang talks importance of musical education


10-28-2015 00:19 BJT

A great artist has two types of legacy to offer the world - one is the art itself, but the other is inspiration for the next generation of creators. This is the gift of Chinese pianist Lang Lang. In 2008, he formed an international foundation to encourage children's love of music.

Lang Lang is renowned worldwide as one of the world's most prolific recording artists, but he wants to do more: bring music education to children.

That's why he started the Lang Lang International Music Foundation in 2008.

 Chinese pianist Lang Lang talks importance of musical education

"Every class in every school that we work with, we gave them a lot of digital pianos. Now when you learn piano, you don't do like you did before, which was one-to-one; you have everybody playing. They have headphones on, so the teachers are almost like DJs," Lang said.

"The way we are bringing musical education is really like language training, so people can talk to each other through music rather than just practice like when I was a kid all by myself."

The purpose of the foundation is to educate, inspire, and motivate the next generation of classical-music lovers and performers. The foundation encourages music performance at all levels as a means of social development for youth, building self-confidence and a drive for excellence.

"The first few years we were focusing on finding the talent of the next generation, and now after several years, we have a good team to develop a very good method - Music Education Method - and we are giving those methods to selected schools which we have a partnership with," Lang said.

"So the first part started with two schools - one in Harlem a year ago, and then Boston two years ago. We are working with the children who are starting to learn music for the first time."

The Chinese-born musician has won countless honors and accolades, including the highest prize awarded by the Ministry of Culture of the People's Republic of China. He has also performed for high-profile international figures such as U.S. President Barack Obama and Queen Elizabeth II.

Lang Lang said, "Music makes me a better person, which helped me become a citizen of the world, traveling around the world, making friends all over the world, and hopefully we are making the world a better place."

"And somehow I believe that this power that I have been very fortunate to have, this wonderful experience needs to be shared with every kid."

The Foundation strives to ignite a passion for music in youth so that they can be leaders in bridging cultural gaps and helping unite local and global communities. The broader goal is to enhance cultural awareness in humanity and in our world.

"They have also done a lot of research with the music education with children, and the children without musical education. They're great. We compared and very interesting, with the people that had a musical education they are also very good in school with other things," Lang said.

Along with its own charitable activities, the foundation has established partnerships with like-minded organizations.

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