Chinese pianist makes his debut in Carnegie Hall with ‘Waldeinsamkeit’, which resonates with the audience

Chinese pianist Ju Xiaofu performs at Carnegie Hall in New York, the United States, on May 19, 2024. (Photo by Pan Liang/Xinhua)

Chinese pianist Ju Xiaofu made his debut at Carnegie Hall in New York City, United States, on Sunday evening, wowing the audience with his performance.

Ju showed his talent with a program of works by composers from the 19th and 20th centuries, including Janáček, R. Schumann, Debussy and Liszt.

Titled “Waldeinsamkeit,” which translates to “forest loneliness” in English, the program and performance itself transported Carnegie Hall’s Zankel Hall to the wintry landscapes of the Czech Republic, Germany, France and Austria.

“Xiaofu’s expressive piano playing reached new levels of depth, especially in the Liszt Sonata. The moving parts were both technically remarkable and emotionally resonant, a testament to his consummate artistry,” said David Witten, piano professor at Montclair State University.

Ju showed not only his virtuosity as a pianist but also his depth as a poet and artist, said Liu Qianci, producer of the concert and founder of Paulus Hook Music Foundation.

“Every note resonated with the deep emotions of a world-class young musician, who intertwines music and literature,” added Liu, who is also a renowned cellist.

The audience included professors, scholars and international students from local conservatories, senior pianists from the New York Piano Association and the New York Piano Teachers’ Association, as well as seasoned classical music enthusiasts from New York, the United Nations and Asian cultural organizations.

Liu emphasized the foundation’s commitment to promoting cultural exchange between China and the United States.

“We eagerly look forward to introducing more exceptional Chinese musicians to Carnegie Hall, a truly global stage,” said Liu.

Born in Nanjing in southeastern China, Ju began his musical journey at the age of four and has since developed into a leading pianist of his generation.

An avid poet, Ju has published two collections of poems titled On the Path Seeking for the Ruins of Spring in 2019 and The Late Sound in 2024.

Ju, an alumnus of The Juilliard School, has been a visiting artist at Singapore Capital College since 2022.