The evolution of Erhu: an evening with Wan Pin Chu and friends mid-autumn festival, music at china exchange
Wan’s performance will create a melodic timeline starting with traditional erhu pieces, moving into more contemporary songs, before finishing with experimental digital music accompanied by a full band.
Wan previously performed at China Exchange with Andy Leung’s New Cola Project.
Wan Pin CHU (or Yunbian Zhu) is an international award-winning Erhuist and composer from Hong Kong, who has received a full scholarship from the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) to study Master in Composition for Film, Television and Game under Francis Shaw, Vasco Hexel, and Enrica Sciandrone at the Royal College of Music in London. He is studying Violin under Madeleine Mitchell also from the Royal College of Music. In September 2014, he went to Japan to study Composition at the Kyoto City University of Arts as an exchange student. In 2015, he is under a mentoring scheme by Maggie Rodford, music producer of ‘Rise of the Planet of the Apes’ and ‘Thor’ in Air-edel, one of the leading music companies in the world. He finished his undergraduate study in 2013 at King’s College London and has received an honor degree in Musicology and Composition.
Wan started learning Erhu, Gaohu and Banhu from his father at the age of seven, and has won two international music competitions, including The United States Open Music Competition (2012) and The Llangollen International Musical Eisteddfod in the United Kingdom (2002). He is also the champion of several national competitions in China such as: The Golden Chinese Redbud Talented Search Competition of Chinese Music (2007), The Asia Chinese Music Solo Competition (2006) and The National Zhong-lu Cup Professional Erhu Competition (2005). In Hong Kong, he has also won: the Hugo Chinese Instrumental Solo Competition (2003), the Advanced Erhu Solo Competition, the Advanced Gaohu Solo Competition and the Advanced Banhu Solo Competition (2002) in The Hong Kong Schools’ Music Festival.
Having performed in over hundreds of concerts all over the world including the UK, the US, France, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Japan, Malaysia, Hong Kong, Mainland China etc., Wan is recognised as a versatile performer with rich emotions and limitless virtuosity in his music. He has performed in front of Xi Jinping, President of People’s Replublic of China, and Prince William, Duke of Cambridge of the United Kingdom. He is the first Chinese instrumentalist to perform in The Duke’s Hall in Royal Academy of Music in London. He has a wide range of repertoires from traditional and regional Chinese Music to Western Classical Music and even Jazz, Pop and Rock. His performance of Western Virtuoso pieces such as Introduction and Rondo Capriccioso by Saint-Saëns and The 24th Violin Caprice by Paganini has also dazzled some Erhu professors in the Central Conservatoire of Music in Beijing, which has awarded him Distinction of Grade 10 professional Erhu diploma.
As well as being a performer, Wan also works as a composer for film, television, games and commercials. In November 2013, two films scored by him had their premier at The National Gallery in London. Wan has also taken part in the music scoring for a Hong Kong film ‘Overheard 3’, one of the highest grossing film series in Hong Kong. In the same year, Wan was invited by the Royal College of Music and School of Oriental and African Studies to give lectures about Chinese Music used in film scoring. In June 2014, he participated in the NYU/ASCAP Film Scoring Workshop in New York. In 2015, two films scored by him got into the Southamton International Film Festival (He was also nominated for the Best Sound as well) and the Austin Film Festival. Currently, Wan is co-scoring a BBC six-episode documentary about Chinese history with Howard Davidson.
Wan is also actively involved in the pop music industry. He has performed with his band ”6th Avenue” and ”Beat Nations” as a pianist and guitarist since 2010.
In order to provide more opportunities for performers in China to show their talent, Wan has formed a company in 2008 called the International Arts Platform Hong Kong and has already organised 13 International Competitions in China and Japan so far. He was also the UK event coordinator of a charity organisation in London called the Mothers’ Bridge of Love where he was responsible for organising events to promote Chinese cultures, identity and education to Chinese orphans and adopted children in the UK.