Innovative piano recital to be staged encouraging audience participation

An unusual piano recital will be staged at the Shanghai Oriental Art Center with all the participants dressed in either black or white and equipped with eye masks.
Ti Gong

Audiences are encouraged to wear eye masks while enjoying the classical music. 

An unusual piano recital will be staged at Shanghai Oriental Art Center with all the participants dressed in either black or white and equipped with eye masks when the orchestra plays a particular piece of work.

Spanish pianist Mario Alonso, a regular visitor to China, is determined to offer a unique classical concert experience to audiences of all ages.

The theater encourages the audiences to put on the given green eye masks when Chopin’s “Nocturne No. 1 in F Major” begins. In another section of the concert, the lights will be switched off when Alonso plays Liszt’s “Consolation No. 3” to give the audiences a feel of the mysterious music played by the pianist.

Four HD cameras will broadcast the moves of the Alonso on a huge LED screen on stage. 

The idea for the evening’s theme came from the concert planner Zhang Xiaoying, who is a non-classical music fan. 

“It will be a success if we can get a 5-year-old boy hooked by the concert. To achieve that, we need some little tricks to catch their attention,” says Zhang, who reveals that those who come with families will also get a free family photo at the concert.

The first trial was made in 2017 at Alonso’s “White Concert.” It surprised him that more than 85 percent of the audiences attending the show dressed in white. The HD cameras captured several beautiful moments of couples and families enjoying the music with sweet smiles on their faces. 

Apart from Western classics, Alonso will also play traditional Chinese works adapted for piano, such as “Colored Clouds Chase the Moon,” “Liuyang River” and “Jasmine Flower.” 

Zhang says he is now working on a certain way to release jasmine fragrance when Alonso plays “Jasmine Flower,” to provide a more comprehensive experience of the music.

Free tickets will be given out to 50 teachers and students from schools for migrant workers’ children.

Performance details

Date: June 18, 7:30pm
Tickets: 80-2800 yuan
Tel: 6854-1234
Venue: Shanghai Oriental Arts Center
Address: 425 Dingxiang Rd, Pudong New Area

Ti Gong
Ti Gong

Alonso played Liszt's Consolation No.3 with all lights out at the concert at Shanghai Oriental Arts Center last year. 

Ti Gong
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