An incredible week in China! The high points were the concerts: each one had terrific energy, both on stage and from the audiences, which felt rapt and attentive in every venue. It was also great to explore the Great Wall with my friends, topped off by an unforgettable Peking Duck at Da Dong restaurant.
Hamilton Cheifetz, Cellist
What a complete whirlwind of a week. My first trip to China was in 1981 as a teenager with the San Learn More » »
Day 2 in Lhasa started bright and early with yak butter tea packed by our guide’s wife and a four-hour drive to Lake Namtso. the highest salt-water lake in the world. We had much to pass the time with on the bus… spectacular scenery and countryside, for which even pictures cannot do proper justice.; one of those things you just need to see to believe. We also saw nomads foraging for caterpillar slime. Tibetans believe that this Learn More » »
Lhasa is an occupied city….a city that is under a steady assault of Chinese workers given incentive by the government to move there to overwhelm the native culture with numbers. We were told repeatedly that this how the Chinese have conquered territories for centuries…..first the troops, then the workers, in an endless supply.
The presence of the Chinese military is pervasive, with tensions running very high after the two recent Learn More » »
-Chengdu retail street-
After the free day in Beijing, Brian, Denise, Hamilton, and Min left for home. Greg, Lisa, and myself began our trek to Tibet, which began with a short flight to Chengdu, capital of Sichuan province, and starting point for our two-day train trip to Lhasa, Tibet.
Chengdu is just another major Chinese city with millions of people, all trying to make a buck. As we walked through the main retail square of Learn More » »
The rigor and excitement of preparing our three concerts was quite a help in fighting jet lag, but with our final concert out of the way, waking up at 6:30 for a two-hour drive to the Great Wall seemed daunting. Then again, it is the Great freaking Wall…what more motivation does one need? Ron and Lisa had plans to visit the 798 arts district, so Hamilton, Brian, Denise and I all crammed into a small car the hotel reserved for us. Learn More » »
After a thrilling night at Zajia Lab, we refocused on the Beijing Festival performance, with a final rehearsal on Professor Danbu’s piece in the morning, and a dress rehearsal in the afternoon. Our program featured several works that required either amplification or projected film, or both. Add to that challenge of 240-volt electrical outlets, plus a language barrier, and chances are good for a little chaos, Chinese style.
I had Learn More » »