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Taiwan Philharmonic Partners With TSMC Education And Culture Foundation And More To Offer Masterclass With Ray Chen

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The master class will be offered on September 13, 2020.

Taiwan Philharmonic Partners With TSMC Education And Culture Foundation And More To Offer Masterclass With Ray Chen

The Taiwan Philharmonic, together with the National Theater & Concert Hall (NTCH), Taiwan Public Television Service (PTS), and TSMC Education and Culture Foundation (TSMC Foundation), invites world-renowned violinist Ray Chen to give the first livestreamed violin masterclass during the pandemic for global music fans on Sunday, September 13, 2020 at 7:00 PM. The masterclass - in tandem with four following concerts with Chen on September 19, 25, 26, and October 4 - launch the orchestra's 2020/21 season with the theme Carrying Forward the Heritage of Time. The Taiwan Public Television Service (PTS) will livestream the masterclass to a global audience free of charge on YouTube. Afterwards, the video will be shared on PTS Plus, as well.

With Taiwan's success in containing the coronavirus outbreak, the masterclass is open for a live audience of 600 people, in both English and Chinese for greater accessibility. Chen will directly instruct four Taiwanese music students of different ages - Yun Lee, Huei-Ciao Yang, Pei-Cheng Chu and Wei-Lin Chen - including sharing personal tips for violin practice. Through the on-site presentation and interaction, viewers should expect many sparks of inspiration.

The Taiwan Philharmonic began their first collaboration with the PTS Live during the pandemic in the first half of 2020, when Taiwan's success in containing the coronavirus outbreak allowed Taiwanese people the privilege of a social life - with some restrictions - including live performances. Attracting global attention, the PTS Live shared three livestreamed Taiwan Philharmonic concerts in May and June led by renowned conductor, Shao-Chia Lü, in 4K high quality. Thus, international music fans were able to enjoy live music when many countries were struggling with lockdowns. This masterclass continues the successful partnership between the two organizations.

Ray Chen, born in Taiwan and First Prize winner of the Yehudi Menuhin (2008) and the Queen Elizabeth Competition (2009), has dedicated himself to music education in addition to his flourishing performance career. He has built an enviable profile in Europe, Asia, and the United States as well as his native Australia both in live performances and on recordings; and now, Chen wants to express his love and care for Taiwan through music performance and education. Moreover, with outreach to communities online, he can expand his influence of classical music even further.

The TSMC Foundation has long been dedicated to promoting arts and culture and has attached great importance to talent cultivation. Even under special circumstances due to COVID-19 this year, the TSMC Foundation continues to focus on its founding mission to support society. This masterclass shows its active participation in the cultivation of Taiwanese music talents. In addition, to tackle the issue of educational gaps between urban and rural areas in Taiwan, the TSMC Foundation invites 30 students from the Emei Bilingual Junior High School in Hsinchu County to the concert "Ray & Friends" on October 4. Through participating in the live concert, the students can get closer to classical music.

Taiwan Philharmonic's former esteemed Music Director of ten years' standing and current Artistic Advisor, Shao-Chia Lü exclaims, "What we musicians do is to expand the opportunities from the finite to the infinite!" In his new role, Lü plans to devote himself to arranging and organizing artistic concepts in accordance with the season's main theme, Carrying Forward the Heritage of Time, which consists of four pillars - the music of Stravinsky; Beethoven; Slavic Nationalists - Dvořák, Mussorgsky, and Rachmaninoff; and Taiwan.

To open the performance season on September 19 with Ray Chen, Shao-Chia Lü has chosen three works that showcase the orchestra he has guided over the past ten years, brought to world-class standards, and led in innumerable highly-acclaimed recordings. The first work is by French composer Paul Dukas and one that millions of people around the world first came to know through Walt Disney's animated feature film Fantasia, in which Mickey Mouse assumes the title role in The Sorcerer's Apprentice. Another early-twentieth-century Frenchman, Maurice Ravel, set the ancient Greek fable of Daphnis and Chloe as an hour-long ballet score that bursts with ravishing, evocative moments and ends with a veritable orgy of sound. Lastly, Camille Saint-Saëns' third violin concerto is one of the mainstays of the romantic violin repertory, music of great lyrical beauty as well as of pyrotechnical displays, in great hands with Ray Chen.

On September 25 and 26, Chen performs J.S. Bach's second violin concerto plus Bach's Concerto for Two Violins and Vivaldi's Concerto for Three Violins with Taiwanese violinists Nai-Yuan Hu and William Wei joining him on stage. Praised by BBC Music Magazine as, "an awesomely capable performer whose technical facility, musical intelligence, and unfaltering verve place him among the higher echelons of today's string virtuosi," Nai-Yuan Hu won the prestigious Queen Elisabeth Competition in 1985. He has since appeared on many of the world's stages including the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, David Geffen Hall in New York, Cité de la Musique in Paris, Suntory Hall in Tokyo, and other major venues in Europe, North and South Americas, and Asia. Also a laureate in the Queen Elisabeth Competition (2015), William Wei is a rising star quickly gaining international attention. Radio Télévision Belge Francophone simply called Wei's playing "superb," and he has performed with such renowned musicians as Gil Shaham, Marin Alsop, and Orion Weiss and such reputable orchestras as the Belgium National Orchestra and Cleveland Orchestra.

Chen finishes the series of concerts with Mozart's third violin concerto on October 4. Stravinsky's Concerto in D for strings, Beethoven's Symphony No. 1, W.A. Mozart's Eine kleine Nachtmusik, and Vivaldi's classic The Four Seasons round out the performances.

Looking ahead, the Taiwan Philharmonic continues an action-packed 2020/2021 season including bringing in conductors Leonard Slatkin and Tan Dun; and pianists Stephen Hough and the Jussen brothers Lucas and Arthur. For more information about the Taiwan Philharmonic's complete season, please visit


TSMC x NSO Music Educational Program - Masterclass with Ray Chen
Sunday, September 13, 2020 | 19:00-21:30 GMT+8
National Concert Hall and PTS Live Stream
Yun Lee, Huei-Ciao Yang, Pei-Cheng Chu, and Wei-Lin Chen, violin
Ray Chen, instructor

Korngold: Violin Concerto in D Major, Op. 35, Mvt. I
Wieniawski: Violin Concerto No. 2 in D minor, Op. 22, Mvt.1
Pablo de Sarasate: Fantasy after Bizet's Opera Carmen, Op. 25
Wieniawski: Variations on an Original Theme, Op. 15

Maestro Series - Season Opening Concert: Daphnis et Chloé
Saturday, September 19, 2020 | 19:30 GMT+8
National Concert Hall
Shao-Chia Lü, conductor
Ray Chen, violin
National Symphony Orchestra
Yu-Chung John Ku, Wei-Chun Regina Chang, chorus master
Taipei Philharmonic Chorus

Paul Dukas: L'apprenti sorcier
Camille Saint-Saëns: Violin Concerto No. 3
Maurice Ravel: Daphnis et Chloé

Timeless Encounters
Friday, September 25, 2020 | 19:30 GMT+8
National Concert Hall
Saturday, September 26, 2020 | 19:30 GMT+8
National Kaohsiung Center for the Arts (Weiwuying)
Shao-Chia Lü, conductor
Nai-Yuan Hu, Ray Chen, William Wei, violin

Johann Sebastian Bach: Violin Concerto No. 2 in E Major, BWV 1042
Johann Sebastian Bach: Concerto for Two Violins in D minor, BWV 1043
Antonio Vivaldi: Concerto for Three Violins in F Major, RV 551
Igor Stravinsky: Concerto in D for strings
Ludwig van Beethoven: Symphony No. 1 in C Major, Op. 21

NSO Chamber Concerts - Ray & Friends
Sunday, October 4, 2020 | 14:30 GMT+8
National Concert Hall
Ray Chen, play & lead
Taiwan Philharmonic musicians

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart: Eine kleine Nachtmusik, K.525
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart: Violin Concerto No. 3 in G Major, K.216
Antonio Vivaldi: The Four Seasons

About Ray Chen
Hailed as, "that RaRa Avis among rising classical stars, a superlative virtuoso who also happens to be a thoroughgoing artist" by Chicago Tribune, Ray Chen is a violinist who redefines what it is to be a classical musician in the 21st Century. Chen has performed with the London Philharmonic Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Leipzig Gewandhausorchester, and more. He works with conductors such as Riccardo Chailly, Kirill Petrenko, and many others. Profiled as "one to watch" by The Strad and Gramophone magazines, Ray Chen's profile continues to grow: he was featured on Forbes' list of 30 most influential Asians under 30; he made a guest appearance on Amazon's "Mozart in the Jungle" TV series; has a multi-year partnership with Giorgio Armani (who designed the cover of his Mozart album with Christoph Eschenbach); and performs at major media events such as France's Bastille Day (live to 800,000 people), the Nobel Prize Concert in Stockholm (telecast across Europe), and the BBC Proms. He has been featured in Vogue magazine and is currently releasing his own design of a violin case for the industry manufacturer GEWA.

Chen's commitment to music education is paramount, and inspires the younger generation of music students with his series of self-produced videos combining comedy and music. Born in Taiwan and raised in Australia, Ray was accepted to the Curtis Institute of Music at age 15, where he studied with Aaron Rosand and was supported by Young Concert Artists. He plays the 1715 "Joachim" Stradivarius violin on loan from the Nippon Music Foundation. This instrument was once owned by the famed Hungarian violinist, Joseph Joachim (1831-1907). Learn more at

About TSMC Education and Culture Foundation
TSMC established the TSMC Education and Culture Foundation (the TSMC Foundation) in 1998. Dr. F. C. Tseng, a long-standing member of the TSMC Board of Directors, serves as the Foundation's Chairman. The Foundation's three objectives a"? caring for the educationally disadvantaged, supporting youth with a diversified educational platform, and promoting arts and culture a"? are the cornerstones of TSMC's social responsibility.

The TSMC Education and Culture Foundation has long addressed the educational gap between urban and rural areas. To tackle the issue, the Foundation cooperates with public and private educational institutions, designing a variety of education programs including the "TSMC Science Tour" and "TSMC Aesthetic Tour," among others. For high school students, the TSMC Foundation provides extracurricular opportunities to grow in both the sciences and humanities by hosting a variety of competitions, camps, and lectures. For college students, the Foundation provides scholarships and support to encourage the students achieve their education goals and realize their dreams. In 2003, the Foundation initiated the "TSMC Hsin-Chu Arts Festival," which presents art exhibits and performances in Hsinchu, Taichung, and Tainan. In addition to inviting internationally recognized artists to Taiwan, the Foundation actively sponsors prominent Taiwanese art groups. Through sponsoring Taiwan's artistic organizations, popularizing Taiwan arts, and culture ecosystem, and enhancing the public's art appreciation, the Foundation enriches humanity and lifts the spiritual life of Taiwan society. Learn more at

About Shao-Chia Lü, Taiwan Philharmonic Artistic Advisor
Taiwan-born conductor Shao-Chia Lü was Music Director of the Taiwan Philharmonic from 2010 to 2020 and continues to serve as Artistic Advisor of the orchestra. He studied music in Taipei, in addition to the Indiana University in the United States and Vienna's College of Music. His training resulted in important first prizes at three renowned international conductor competitions: Besançon (France), Pedrotti (Italy), and Kondrashin (the Netherlands). Shao-Chia Lü accepted positions as General Music Director of the Koblenz Theatre (1998-2001), the Staatsorchester Rheinische Philharmonie Koblenz (1998-2004), and the Staatsoper Hannover (2001- 2006). He has also been Chief Conductor of the South Denmark Philharmonic from 2014 to 2017.

Maestro Lü appears regularly as guest conductor at several world-renowned opera houses including the Opera Australia in Sydney and Melbourne, the English National Opera, Théâtre de la Monnaie in Brussels, Den Norske Opera in Oslo, Gothenburg Opera, Oper Frankfurt, Staatsoper Hamburg and Stuttgart, Deutsche Oper, and Komische Oper Berlin. Alongside his opera activities, Lü is equally at home on concert podiums. Lü has worked frequently with many leading European orchestras, such as the Oslo Philharmonic, Orchestra dell'Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia, Norwegian and Swedish Radio Orchestras, Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestra, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, Orchestre National de France, SWR Stuttgart, Rundfunksinfonieorchster Berlin, the Göteborgs Sinfoniker, Staatskapelle Weimar, Frankfurter Museumsorchester, and Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra in Amsterdam. In Asia, Lü has worked with the Hong Kong Philharmonic, NHK, New Japan Philharmonic, Seoul Philharmonic, KBS Symphony Orchestra, and leading orchestras in China.

About Nai-Yuan Hu, violin
Since winning the First Prize of the prestigious Queen Elisabeth Competition in 1985, violinist Nai-Yuan Hu has appeared as soloist with such orchestras as the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra of London, Toronto Symphony, Seattle Symphony, Netherland and Rotterdam Philharmonic orchestras, Belgian National Orchestra, Orchestre National de Lille in France, Austro-Hungarian Haydn Chamber Orchestra, Tokyo Philharmonic, and Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony, among others.

Mr. Hu's recording of Goldmark's Concerto and Bruch's Second Concerto with Gerard Schwarz and the Seattle Symphony (Delos label) garnered "Critics' Choice" from Gramophone as well as praises from many publications including BBC Music Magazine, The Times of London, and The Washington Post.

Mr. Hu has served on the jury of international competitions such as Queen Elisabeth Competition in Brussels and Seoul Violin Competition.

About William Wei
Laureate of the prestigious 2015 Queen Elisabeth International Violin Competition, rising young Taiwanese violinist William Wei is quickly building an international career as a soloist. A winner of the Salon de Virtuosi's 2018 Career Grant, William has been invited twice by renowned New York Times music critic Robert Sherman to perform on WQXR's Young Artists Showcase. Following his recital debut in Taiwan, William has appeared as soloist on multiple occasions, performing with such orchestras as the Belgium National Orchestra, Cleveland Orchestra, Sejong Soloists, and Taipei Symphony Orchestra, among others. He has appeared as soloist at such venues as Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall, Kaufman Music Center, Merkin Concert Hall, Jordan Hall, Seoul Arts Center, and Cremona Stradivari Museum (Museo del Violino). William has performed with such renowned musicians as Gil Shaham, Marin Alsop, Nai Yuan Hu, Cho Liang Lin, Orion Weiss, and Ronald Feldman.

Born in Taiwan, William began his violin studies at the age of five. He is a proud recipient of the Jerome L. Greene Foundation Scholarship at the Juilliard School, where he earned his Bachelor's degree under Hyo Kang. He is currently pursuing his Master's degree at the Hochschule für Musik Hanns Eisler in Berlin under Kolja Blacher, former concertmaster of the Berlin Philharmonic. William plays on a 1761 Tomasso Balestrieri loaned from the Chimei Foundation in Taiwan.

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