Xinhai remembered
Published: Aug 22, 2011 08:15 AM Updated: Aug 22, 2011 08:17 AM

Hoi Kin Wa, president of Macao Youth Symphony Orchestra Photos: Xiao Xiong

When the conductor finished the last movement at the Forbidden City Concert Hall Friday night, Hoi Kin Wa, president of Macao Youth Symphony Orchestra finally relaxed as the orchestra's six-city tour, called The Light of Renaissance, was over.

"It was a great experience for the members and me to travel and perform in these cities, bringing music enjoyment for the youngsters there," he told the Global Times.

During the past 13 days since August 7, the orchestra together with Central Conservatory of Music Chorus staged six concerts in Macao, Taipei, Shanghai, Wuhan, Nanjing and Beijing, in order to mark the centennial anniversary of the Xinhai Revolution in 1911.

"We share a period of important history, which is hardly known by the youngsters nowadays. So we are honored to be part of this meaningful tour. And we were careful with our music selection, considering well-known songs and some Chinese operas to match the celebration," he said.

They brought opera Song of Eternal Lament adapted by musician Zhou Ye, Song of Fate by Brahms and Dvorak's Symphony No 9 (From the New World). This tour marked the debut of the adapted opera Song of Eternal Lament, originally created in 1932 by Huang Zi, one of the most important composers of that time. The September 18 Incident in 1931, when Japanese Imperialist forces attacked and occupied northeast China as the first stage of their war against China, angered Huang and his fellow Chinese. He wrote the opera to express his anger and love for the motherland through the story of Emperor Tangminghuang during the Tang Dynasty (618-907).

"Staging this well-known opera among Chinese both home and abroad will boost the channel of communication among the cities and pay a tribute to Huang," said young conductor Lin Daye, who conducted the tour with Macao conductor Liao Guomin.

Accompanied by the Central Conservatory of Music Chorus, their interpretation of the opera has been well-received in each city. "I am not a music enthusiast, but have to say they are awesome. Music is good, and singing is good too," said an audience member surnamed Gao after their Wuhan gig.

This tour is funded by China Arts Foundation under their long-term music education program Aiyue Practice Public Education Program, which aims to get more students involved in participatory music appreciation programs.