Maestro Xu Zhong, the president of the Shanghai Opera House, became one of the first batch of Chinese conductors to perform in Europe in the wake of the pandemic when he wielded the baton for the Orchestre de Paris at the La Philharmonie de Paris in France on March 29 and 30.
"This is a long-awaited reunion for us as well as music lovers in France and Europe," said Anne-Sophie Brandalise, director of the Orchestre de Paris.
The concert program consisted of Dvorak's Symphony No. 9, Mozart's Concerto No. 10 for two pianos, featuring Chinese pianist Wan Jieni and French pianist Nathalia Milstein, and The Five Elements by Chinese composer Chen Qigang.
One of the most celebrated orchestras in the world, Orchestra de Paris has a history of almost 200 years and is recognized for its exquisite interpretation of music, Xu told China Daily in a telephone interview after the first concert.
A former student of the Paris Conservatory, Xu used to live and work in France for many years and found himself so comfortable among the musicians during the rehearsal that he felt as if they "could resonate at the same frequency."
"We had some great discussion about the Chinese composition of the Five Elements, and I think this resulted in a perfect rendering of Chen Qigang's iconic piece about Chinese philosophy," he said.
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