Piano legend Lang Lang puts faith in insight, creativity

30 january 2013, 10:55
Chinese-born classical superstar Lang Lang believes that the struggling music industry must be creative to find the right mechanisms to drive the business forwards, AFP reports.

"There are great opportunities to explore and new and exciting ways to promote and share the music we love," Lang Lang said in a keynote address at MIDEM's Visionary Monday.

The aim of the meeting was to bring together those considered the industry's forward thinkers to brainstorm ways of moving forward.

Lang Lang stressed the dazzling speed at which new technology was being introduced. Musicians were greatly indebted to the technology sector's creative talents who were helping the music industry reach new audiences, he added.

But no software can replicate human feeling, he told delegates.

"Ultimately what counts in music is humanity that will inspire and move the listener and that comes through the depth of the performance," he said.

Lang Lang has made use of social media to stay connected with his huge fan base, to promote his concerts and the foundations he set up to help nurture young musicians.

Social media were a perfect place to share our music thoughts, Lang Lang said in a YouTube video interview ahead of the show.

He used downtime in airports to share photos and catch up with fans, though he admitted he did have some help for this.

"I write everything by myself and post it in one place where people can copy it to the other social media pages, he explained.

But the way the industry promoted music was still a bit conservative, he said, without elaborating.

"Today, however, it is much easier to access a great performance so I really believe that we believe that we always find the right moment with the Internet and social media.

"This will open up millions of ways to explore this amazing art," he added.

Like a number of other major stars, Lang Lang has also been very active partnering with major advertising brands.

He has just signed a two-year deal with MasterCard, he told AFP.

"I am very proud to have signed the deal with MasterCard as my foundation is creating 101 pianist events and this means that MasterCard will be allied to this event," he said.

Lang Lang has set up a foundation to help nurture gifted young pianists.

This kind of patronage had a long tradition, he pointed out: talented musicians, including Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, were often supported financially by wealthy sponsors.

"You need partners as it is quite expensive to make important projects," he stressed.

"The business side is about connecting audience and artist. But the main thing is to keep the artistry itself pure," he added.

Of his own ambitions, he said: "In art there is no (age) limit. I still have a lot of things to learn and to experience and to try and get better.

"At the age of 30, I still have a long way to go and I am still very excited about my profession," he added with a smile.

The four-day annual MIDEM music industry meeting finishes on Tuesday.

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