Lang Lang


The pianist Lang Lang, who has been heralded as the “hottest artist on the classical music planet” by the New York Times, has played sold out concerts in every major city in the world and is the first Chinese pianist to be engaged by the Vienna Philharmonic, Berlin Philharmonic and the leading US-american orchestras. Resulting from his great success, renowned Time Magazine has included Lang Lang in the “Time 100”, the magazine’s annual list of the 100 Most Influential People in the World. In 2008, more than four billion people around the world watched Lang Lang perform at the Opening Ceremony of the 2008 Beijing Olympics, where he represented the youth of China and its future.

Lang Lang started playing the piano aged three. He won the Shenyang Competition and gave his first public recital by the time he was five and entered Beijing’s Central Music Conservatory aged nine. At age 13, he played the complete Chopin Etudes at the Beijing Concert Hall and won first prize at the Tchaikovsky International Young Musicians’ Competition. He left for the Curtis Institute in Philadelphia and had his break through aged 17 when he was called to make a dramatic last-minute substitution for the famous Andre Watts to perform in the “Gala Of The Century”, playing the first piano concerto by Tchaikovsky with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Christoph Eschenbach. It made him what journalists like to call an “overnight star” and the world’s finest concert halls quickly beckoned.

Since then, Lang Lang has formed enduring musical partnerships with the world’s greatest artists, among them conductors such as Daniel Barenboim, Gustavo Dudamel, Sir Simon Rattle, Nikolaus Harnoncourt and Christoph Eschenbach. Moreover, he constantly aims for exchange with non-classical musicians – examples for these collaborations include his performances at the GRAMMY Awards with Metallica and Pharrell Williams as well as with jazz titan Herbie Hancock, that were watched by millions on the TV screens. For his CD- and DVD-recordings, Lang Lang has been awarded multiple prizes, including eight ECHO Klassik awards in Germany alone, most recently for his recording of Mozart’s piano concertos with Nikolaus Harnoncourt and the Vienna Philharmonic.

For about a decade Lang Lang has contributed to musical education and support for children world-wide. In 2008, the pianist founded the „Lang Lang International Music Foundation“ that aims at cultivating tomorrow’s top pianists, championing music education at the forefront of technology, and building a young audience through live music experiences. For his work with his foundation, Lang Lang 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 has been honoured with various titles, including being added as one of the 250 Young Global Leaders picked by the World Economic Forum and receiving the 2010 Crystal Award in Davos. In May 2011, Lang Lang received an Honorary Doctorate of Music from His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales at the Royal College of Music, and he received his second Honorary Doctorate in Musical Arts at the Manhattan School of Music in May 2012. Most recently he received an Honorary Doctor Degree in Fine Arts from New York University as well as Honorary Doctorates from the Birmingham City University and the China Central Conservatory (first in the school’s 75 year history). In December 2011, he was honored 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.

Lang Langs auto biography, Journey of a Thousand Miles, has been published by Random House in eleven languages, and was released to critical acclaim – and as part of his commitment to the education of children, he released a version specifically for younger readers, entitled Playing with Flying Keys.

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