Chao Hsiu Chen Gallery
Chao-Hsiu Chen

The Master

  The novel is now available as eBook with the original text and illustrations by Chao-Hsiu Chen
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Song of Hope

  Three women in three generations struggle with love and pain through times of great political upheaval in China.
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“Simplicity is the final achievement.” – Chopin

Find harmony in music

The ancient Duca Zhou (1100BC) of China was the first to establish the function of music in society. Confucius worked all his life towards bringing back this function. Both men understood that the deeper sense of music had nothing to do with the music itself, but with its ability to stimulate emotions and feelings in others. Through it one can bring different people together in harmony and unite their actions. As great philosophers and wonderful teachers, Duca Zhou and Confucius knew the secret of how to rule people. They recognized that the best way to lead a country is by creating harmony amongst its people.

Simplicity is the perfection

The first time I met Carl Orff was in a seminar room in Salzburg. He entered the room and immediately asked where I was from. “Taiwan” I answered. He was thoughtful for a moment and then said, “Many parents in your country would have encouraged their children to play the piano or violin. There are certainly not many who chose to play percussion as the first two can be performed solo whereas the last one not.” The other students laughed and he went on, “Often people are attracted to instruments which seem more complicated to play, but it is often harder to play a simple piece perfectly than to play a complicated piece averagely.” These words had a great influence on me and from that day on I tried to interpret art in a simple way, and I try to make the simplicity as perfect as possible. “Simplicity is the final achievement.” – Chopin gave me my motto for creativity. Over the years the theory is proven to me again and again. Sometimes it is harder to play a simple Mozart variation perfectly than a complicated Rachmaninoff Rhapsody.
Traditional Chinese music is very different from western music; the notes are written with Chinese characters and there are only five tones in a scale instead of seven. Even so is can be perfectly integrated into western themes. One of the best examples of this is Puccini’s opera ‘Turandot’.

Love can grow hope

Nowadays more and more Chinese musicians are becoming known around the world, such as the cellist Yo Yo Ma or the pianist Lang Lang. They both began by playing western instruments and studied western classical music, but now combine Chinese and western music in their art. I am sure that more and more musicians will find success in this way, even those who first chose to study traditional Chinese theory and instruments.
Western music has blossomed out of my Chinese roots. In my compositions I often use the Chinese five tone scale, but I also like to include elements of western music so that the melodies may also sound familiar to western ears. Poetry should be heard in music, melody should appear in writing and paintings should be filled with wondrous melody. Through these various forms of art I hope to get across one message: Love can grow hope, as long as we know to treasure it.

My music publication


Chao-Hsiu Chen

Music is the Heart Language of Everybody

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