TCU professors broadcast live concert from China

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    Three TCU School of Music faculty members attracted international interest in both music and the university following a special holiday performance in China.

    Professors John Owings (piano), Misha Galaganov (viola) and Yuan Xiong Lu (double bass) led the annual New Year’s Celebration Concert at the Shanghai Concert Hall on Dec. 26th.

    More than 60 million listeners and viewers tuned into the concert, which was broadcast live to China and the United States through a live Internet stream, Owings said. Tickets to the performance sold out weeks in advance.

    “It was a big event,” he said. “[It had] a very impressive kind of atmosphere.”

    This was not the first time faculty members had performed in China. In December 2009, Owings performed in Shanghai, Beijing and Shen Yun with five other faculty members.

    The faculty members also taught in various conservatories, or schools focused on music.

    “The opportunity for TCU to have some exposure [in 2009] was a kind of catalyst that brought about this most recent invitation,” Owings said. “Since we had already been there and kind of laid the groundwork, people in China now know that TCU exists.”

    Galaganov felt TCU was well known in China and the university had a very good reputation, he said. During the four days the professors were in China, they held master classes specialized for each of their instruments, and gave lectures to students at The Shanghai Conservatory of Music. While lecturing, they spoke about the university and the university’s music department.

    “We will probably see more interest [in TCU] in a year,” Galaganov said. “Hopefully during this year we will see more interest.”

    With 211 undergraduate students in the music department, 51 are international students. After this recent trip, Owings said there had already been some immediate results and inquiries from students in Shanghai, as well as other parts of China.

    “You plant the seeds and then the results might show up in the future,” Owings said.

    Galaganov said newspapers and tabloids all over Shanghai wrote about their New Year’s performance. Although the professors openly admitted to being unable to fully read the articles, the one thing they could understand was multiple references to TCU.

    The performance not only gained international attention, but sparked attention within the School of Music as well.

    “The School of Music already has a handful of international students,” sophomore Elizabeth Kirkendoll, a music performance major said. “But even more, [the concert] showed that we are a great program and we can compete with bigger schools.”

    “It was a really big opportunity for the whole School of Music,” Kirkendoll said, “It really put us out there internationally.”

    Sophomore Steven Beatrice, a music education major said, “Between the bands traveling to New York and Cuba, [China] is just one more thing to get the school out nationally and worldwide, and if anything it will bring more students from the country to TCU, expand our school, and get it more nationally recognized.”

    Upcoming events:

    Guest Artist Series

    Elisa Williams Bickers, organ

    When: 7:00 p.m. – Friday, Jan. 14

    Where: Ed Landreth Auditorium

    Ensemble Concert Series

    Celebration of the

    International Day of

    Collaborative Music

    When: 7:00 p.m. – Saturday,

    Jan. 22

    Where: PepsiCo Recital Hall

    Guest Artist Series

    Douglas Pummill, tenor

    assisted by Janet Pummill and Sallie Pummill Pollack,

    piano, Misha Galaganov,

    viola, Xiaolai Zhou, cello

    When: 3:00 p.m. – Sunday,

    Jan. 23

    Where: PepsiCo Recital Hall

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