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Lang Lang | Sophie Shao: Bio

Very few artists can claim to have the same profound impact on the world of music as Lang Lang has had. As a pianist, educator and philanthropist, as well as an influential ambassador for the arts, Lang Lang has fully embraced new technology and innovation, leading the way in bringing classical music into the 21st century. Equally happy playing for billions of viewers at the 2008 Olympic Opening Ceremony in Beijing or just for a few hundred children in the public schools, Lang Lang is a master of communicating through music. Gifted with unique artistic and communicative skills, Lang Lang unites excellence and accessibility unlike anyone else, and builds bridges between Eastern and Western culture.

Heralded by the New York Times as "the hottest artist on the classical music planet", Lang Lang works with the most excellent classical musicians of our time. He has formed ongoing collaborations with conductors including Sir Simon Rattle, Gustavo Dudamel, Daniel Barenboim and Christoph Eschenbach and performs with the world's top orchestras, such as the Berlin and Vienna Philharmonics as well as America's leading orchestras. Lang Lang plays sold-out concerts in the major concert halls of every continent in the world. Recent memorable appearances include concerts at the prestigious Sydney Opera House, as well as a performance in the old town of Havana with Cuban jazz legend Chucho Valdés, fostering musical exchanges with Cuba. Lang Lang is known for thinking "outside the box" and frequently steps into different musical worlds, teaming up with artists from diverse genres. His performances at the GRAMMY Awards with Metallica, Pharrell Williams or jazz legend Herbie Hancock were hailed by millions of viewers. His video collaboration with dubstep dancer Marquese "Nonstop" Scott continues to inspire a global internet community.

For about a decade Lang Lang has contributed to musical education and support for children worldwide. In 2008 he founded the "Lang Lang International Music Foundation" aimed at cultivating tomorrow's top pianists, championing music education at the forefront of technology, and building a young audience through live music experiences. Headquartered in New York City, the Foundation has implemented its programs in North America, Europe and Asia, and was awarded an ECHO Klassik special prize in 2015. In 2013 Lang Lang was designated by the Secretary General of the United Nations as a "Messenger of Peace" focusing on global education. He also currently serves on the Weill Music Institute Advisory Committee as part of Carnegie Hall's educational program and is the youngest member of Carnegie Hall's Artistic Advisory Board.

Lang Lang's tireless energy and boundless drive to attract new audiences to classical music have brought him numerous titles and awards: he was presented with the 2010 Crystal Award in Davos and was picked as one of the 250 "Young Global Leaders" by the World Economic Forum. He is also the recipient of many honorary doctorates, notably from the Royal College of Music (presented by His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales), the Manhattan School of Music and New York University. In December 2011 he was honored with the highest prize awarded by the Ministry of Culture of the People's Republic of China. More recently, he has received the highest German civilian honor, the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany, in recognition of his distinguished services to music, and in January 2013 he was presented with the Medal of the Order of Arts and Letters by the French Minister of Culture.

In 2016 Lang Lang was invited to the Vatican to perform for Pope Francis at the opening ceremony of the first Faith and Sports World Conference. He has also performed for numerous other international dignitaries and heads of state, including four US presidents and monarchs from many nations.

Lang Lang started playing the piano aged three, won the Shenyang Competition and gave his first public recital before the age of five, entered Beijing's Central Music Conservatory aged nine, and won First Prize at the International Tchaikovsky Competition for Young Musicians and played the complete Chopin Études at the Beijing Concert Hall at thirteen. He left China for Philadelphia's Curtis Institute, where he worked with the legendary pianist Gary Graffman. He was seventeen when his big break came, substituting for André Watts at the "Gala of the Century", playing Tchaikovsky's First Piano Concerto with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Christoph Eschenbach: he became an overnight sensation and the invitations started to pour in.

Lang Lang's autobiography, Journey of a Thousand Miles, was released to critical acclaim and has been published by Random House in eleven languages. As part of his commitment to the education of children, Lang Lang also released a special version aimed at younger readers, entitled Playing with Flying Keys.

Lang Lang is leading the way in bringing music education into the 21st century through his highly regarded new publishing program, the Lang Lang Piano Academy, produced in collaboration with Faber Music. Mastering the piano, five progressive books exploring piano technique, launched the program, to which the latest addition is The Lang Lang Piano Method, an imaginative new tutor for complete beginners that is used in the public schools' educational program "Keys of Inspiration". 

 

Cellist Sophie Shao is rapidly gaining international acclaim for her brilliant, mature interpretations of repertoire ranging from Bach and Beethoven to Crumb and Wilson. Strad Magazine praised her "superior sense of style" and the World News described her "sensitive, stylistic playing, with great finesse, emotion, and gorgeous tone."

Winner of top prizes at the 2001 Rostropovich Competition and the XII Tchaikovsky Competition in 2002, Ms. Shao received the prestigious Avery Fisher Career Grant at the age of nineteen. She made her first appearance with the Houston Symphony at the age of eleven, playing Boccherini's Cello Concerto, and has returned to perform with the orchestra on numerous occasions. Other orchestral appearances include the Orchestre de Paris with Christoph Eschenbach, the Russian State Academic Symphony Cappella with Valery Poliansky, Erie Symphony, Yale Symphony, Abilene Philharmonic, Orchestra of the Southern Finger Lakes, the Cayuga Chamber Orchestra, among others. She has performed recitals throughout the United States, Europe, and Asia, and has appeared in performances in such venues as the 92nd Street Y, Carnegie, Avery Fisher, Alice Tully, and Merkin Halls in New York, Suntory Hall in Tokyo, Heinz Hall in Pittsburgh, Ford Centre in Toronto, and Rice University in Houston.

In great demand as a chamber musician, she has collaborated with members of the Beaux Arts Trio, the Guarneri, Juilliard, Orion, Cleveland, Mendelssohn String Quartets, and has performed with such distinguished artists as Gary Graffman, David Shifrin, Jaime Laredo, Andre Previn, Eugene Istomin, Cho-Liang Lin, Andre-Michel Schub, Paquito D'Rivera, Andras Schiff, Fred Sherry, Ani Kavafian, Claude Frank, Andre Watts, Martha Argerich, and Christoph Eschenbach. Ms. Shao's many festival appearances include Marlboro, Chamber Music Northwest, Bard, Caramoor, Bridgehampton, Sarasota, Music from Angel Fire, Vail, Saratoga, and Ravinia. In the 1998-1999 and 1999-2000 seasons, Sophie Shao was a member of Chamber Music Society Two, the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center's program for emerging young artists, and continues to be a regular guest at the Chamber Music Society. In the 2003-2004 season, she performed frequently with Concertante, an ensemble devoted to playing chamber works of five people or more, and her chamber music collaborations this season takes her throughout the United States and Taiwan.

Ms. Shao can be heard on EMI Classics, playing Andre Previn's Reflections with the Curtis Orchestra under the direction of the composer. Her 1995 performance of Mendelssohn's Quartet in a minor appears on Marlboro Music Festival's 50th Anniversary Album on Bridge Records. Just released by Albany Records in July of 2005, "Diablerie" features the music of composer Richard Wilson, performed by Rolfe Schulte, violin, Sophie Shao, cello, Allen Blustine, clarinet, and Richard Wilson, piano.

A native of Houston, Texas, Ms. Shao began playing the cello at age six, and was a student of Shirley Trepel, then the principal cellist of the Houston Symphony and professor at Rice University. At age thirteen she enrolled at the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia, studying cello with David Soyer and chamber music with Felix Galimir. After graduating from the Curtis Institute, she continued her cello studies with Aldo Parisot at Yale University, receiving a B.A. in Religious Studies from Yale College and an M.M. from the Yale School of Music, where she was enrolled as a Paul and Daisy Soros Fellow. She now resides in Manhattan, and teaches cello at the Bard College Conservatory of Music, Vassar College, and Princeton University.

Lang Lang | Sophie Shao

Howard Shore - Two Concerti

Sony Classical

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1 RUIN & MEMORY Concerto for Piano and Orchestra / Andante Nobile
2 RUIN & MEMORY Concerto for Piano and Orchestra / Largo
3 RUIN & MEMORY Concerto for Piano and Orchestra / Prestissimo
4 MYTHIC GARDENS Concerto for Violoncello and Orchestra / Cimbrone
5 MYTHIC GARDENS Concerto for Violoncello and Orchestra / Medici
6 MYTHIC GARDENS Concerto for Violoncello and Orchestra / Visconti Borromeo Litta
Howard Shore A Composer's Dream

World-renowned for his many award-winning film scores including "The Lord of the Rings" and "The Hobbit", Howard Shore's latest album "Two Concerti" shows that his immense compositional talents light up not only the cinema screen but the classical concert stage as well. Released on February 17, the album presents two specially commissioned works dedicated to the music of Frédéric Chopin - the piano concerto Ruin & Memory - performed by renowned pianist Lang Lang; and the cello concerto Mythic Gardens performed by award-winning cellist Sophie Shao.

33 NEW  52 TOTAL
SYND: 
C24, CBC, CLASSIC fM
Direct: SiriusXM, AccuRadio
Markets include: New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco, Boston, Dallas, Atlanta, Cleveland, Seattle, Minneapolis, Austin, Pittsburgh, Louisville, NE(Statewide), MN(Statewide), OR(Statewide), Barcelona
INTER: Canada, UK, Spain
Online: MovieWave, TroonRadio

Crossover Media Projects with: Lang Lang | Sophie Shao