A bit of China at this year's Grammy Awards

Yao Minji
Two musicians of Chinese descent, Laufey Lín Bing Jónsdóttir and Yuja Wang, who won the Grammy Awards this year, are being widely celebrated on social media.
Yao Minji

Two Grammy winners trended overnight on Chinese social media.

At the 66th Grammys, Chinese-Icelandic Gen-Z singer-songwriter Laufey Lín Bing Jónsdóttir won Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album.

"I never in a million years thought that this would happen," she remarked in her acceptance speech taking off on a European tour.

A bit of China at this year's Grammy Awards

Jónsdóttir's RED account was updated with her latest Grammy pictures.

Beijing-born pianist Yuja Wang, who is now based in the US, won her first Grammy after being nominated four times since 2009.

Wang was forced to miss the event as she was preparing for a concert with Czech Philharmonic on February 8.

Wang was named "one of the most talented musicians on the face of the Earth right now, a person who's drawn so many people to the music that we play" by her Best Classical Instrumental Solo co-winner and conductor Teddy Abrams.

A bit of China at this year's Grammy Awards

Yuja Wang has won the Best Classical Instrumental Solo with "The American Project."

Born to a Chinese violinist mother and Icelandic economist father, Jónsdóttir spent her childhood between Washington DC and Reykjavik, with summer camps in Beijing.

She committed herself to "making music for Gen-Z" when her second studio album "Bewitched" set the Spotify jazz streaming record on its release day with 5.7 million streams, surpassing Lady Gaga and Tony Bennett's 2021 album "Love for Sale."

The performer has only begun to get Chinese social media followers compared with her over 3.8 million TikTok fans. Her Grammy performance video went viral on Weibo, China's equivalent to X, garnering over 200,000 views in 10 hours.

"Coming from two different cultures between Iceland and China (gives) me a very open view of music and culture," she said in Hong Kong last year.

She also played at the Beijing Music Festival last year, winning over young admirers who call her Big Sister Bing.

Now, more of them are asking who this half-Chinese musician is?

A bit of China at this year's Grammy Awards

Jónsdóttir posted her Beijing citywalk photo on Weibo last year.

Many Chinese classical music fans took to her after discovering that her grandfather is Lin Yaoji, a famous violin teacher known as "mining master, champion professor."

In 1962, Lin began violin lessons at Beijing's Central Conservatory of Music. Lin's students have won over 40 prizes in international violin competitions since the 1980s, including 13 gold medals.

Last December, pianist Wang completed a 17-day China tour in nine cities, including Shanghai.

Wang is known for her brilliance, immaculate performances, and trademark short dress and deep bow.

Early on, conservative musicians and media criticized her for not dressing like a classical musician but few criticized her technique.

A bit of China at this year's Grammy Awards

Yuja Wang is seen in this 2015 file photo when she was in Shanghai for a concert.

Wang, who gave her first piano performance at 7 and left China at the age of 14 without any knowledge of English, describes herself as "independent-minded and self-reliant."

Her international and domestic support has grown over time.

Tickets ran out in minutes and there were big queues for her concerts.

In her final two Beijing concerts, Wang performed 50-minute encores.

These two Grammy winners join the growing number of musicians with Chinese heritage who have won Grammys.

Yo-Yo Ma

A bit of China at this year's Grammy Awards

Yo-Yo Ma at the 45th Grammy Awards

The Chinese-American cellist has won 19 Grammy Awards since 1985. He founded the Silk Road Ensemble in 1998 to promote cross-cultural artistic interchange. The group is named after the historical trading route of the same name.

Wu Man

A bit of China at this year's Grammy Awards

Wu Man has recorded over 40 albums, including the Grammy Award-winning "Sing Me Home" for Best World Music Album with the Silkroad Ensemble.

The pipa (Chinese lute) player and composer is the founding member of Yo-Yo Ma's Silkroad project and premiered works by such composers as Philip Glass, Lou Harrison, Terry Riley and Tan Dun.

Wu was born in Hangzhou, Zhejiang Province, and has recorded over 40 albums, including "Sing Me Home" with the Silkroad Ensemble, which won the 59th Grammy for Best World Music Album.

She also featured in a few Grammy-nominated albums including Lou Harrison's "Pipa Concerto" and "Our World in Song."

Tan Dun

A bit of China at this year's Grammy Awards

Tan Dun won Best Score Soundtrack Album For A Motion Picture, Television, or Other Visual Media at the 44th Grammy Awards.

The composer won both the Grammy and Oscar for his original score for Ang Lee's Oscar-winning film, "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon."

Yangjin Lamu

A bit of China at this year's Grammy Awards

Yangjin Lamu (left) and Yukiko Matsuyama at the 53rd Grammys.

The musician from the Xizang Autonomous Region sang "Words of Wish Fulfillment" in Paul Winter Consort's CD "Miho: Journey to the Mountain."

Japan's Miho Museum, which was designed by I.M.Pei, commissioned the album, which won Best New Age Album Grammy in 2011.

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