By Jacob Stockinger
In China, the piano is not what it used to be for many decades.
Especially during the era of Chairman Mao Zedong, the piano became a symbol of Western culture and bourgeois decadence that the Communist leader and his followers rejected.
But with the recent economic resurgence of China and its emphasis on education – coupled to the “tiger mom” phenomenon — the piano has become a status symbol.
The Ear earlier ran a piece on the way Western classical music is treated in today’s China versus how it was treated during the Cultural Revolution.
Here is a link to that background story:
And this past week, The New York Times featured an extended story about the future of the piano in China – along with the future in China of the Steinway piano company, the most famous maker of pianos in the world.
Here is a link to that fascinating story that certainly suggests that the center of the classical piano culture is shifting from Western Europe and North America to Asian and specifically China: