Garden hits right notes

The 2018 Concert on the Green of Chenshan Musical Festival will be held at Chenshan Botanical Garden on May 19 and 20.

The 2018 Concert on the Green of Chenshan Musical Festival will be held at Chenshan Botanical Garden on May 19 and 20.

This year, the biggest outdoor festival for classical music in Shanghai will feature the WDR Symphony Orchestra Cologne, WDR Radio Choir Cologne, SWR Vokal Ensemble, Shanghai Philharmonic Orchestra, Groove Papa and other groups to present four concerts at two arenas in the garden.

The Day One theme is “Sound of Rhine.” A group of 170 artists from top or long-established German orchestras and choirs, led by conductor Jukka-Pekka Saraste, will perform pieces by Bach, Beethoven and Brahms.

Zhang Haochen, a young Chinese pianist gaining worldwide renown, will play Beethoven’s Choral Fantasia in C Minor Op 80, or “Ode to Joy.” The groundbreaking piece mixes piano, the human voice and orchestra while giving pianists plenty of freedom to exercise their talents.

Former “girl genius” Yang Tianwa will perform Beethoven’s Romance in F Major Op 50. She holds the record as the youngest violinist to record Paganini’s 24 Caprices at age 13. Yang is a two-time winner of the Echo Klassik, Germany’s major classical music award.

The theme of Day Two is “Praise of Love.” Artists from Shanghai Philharmonic Orchestra, led by Chinese conductor Chen Xieyang, together with soprano Xu Lei and violinist Nancy Zhou, will perform a series of pieces in a salute to love.

Among other works to be performed are Elgar’s “Salut d’Amour,” Puccini’s “Oh! Mio Babbino Caro,” Tchaikovsky’s “Romeo and Juliet Fantasy Overture” and Mendelssohn’s “Wedding March.”

Groove Papa, a Shanghai-based percussion band, will perform pieces derived from African culture and the samba of Brazil.

Adults with children can also enjoy interactive games during this year’s festival.


May 19

2pm “Music Planet” Children Zone

2:30pm Groove Papa

6pm “Sound of Rhine” — WDR Symphony Orchestra Cologne, WDR Radio Choir Cologne, SWR Vokal Ensemble


May 20

2pm “Music Planet” Children Zone

2:30pm Groove Papa

6pm “Love In Music” — Shanghai Philharmonic Orchestra

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