Ning-Wu Du -Pianist
Ning-Wu Du is an accomplished artist both as pianist and composer. His parents both being composers, he showed an affinity for music at a young age. Among his piano teachers were Kong-Fun Zhang, Ya Huang and Qi Li, as well as Prof. Ming Xiao, with whom he studied at the Middle School of the Shanghai Conservatory of Music. He also studied composition with his father Qian Du. At the age of sixteen, he was a top prizewinner of the 2nd Tokyo International Music Competition. Enthusiastically received by audiences and critics alike, he was described as "unaffected and natural, possessing emotional depth and youthful energy." Consequently, Du was invited back to Japan the following year to give a concert tour. Among his many awards is the 1st Prize of the 3rd Sydney International Piano Competition of Australia which he won at the age of eighteen. The American music critic Harold C. Schonberg, one of the jury members, later wrote in the New York Times magazine: "Du has the greatest natural talent."” Ning-Wu Du furthered his piano study at the Juilliard School in New York under concert pianists Russell Sherman and Oxana Yablonskaya. He has performed worldwide in recital and with orchestra, in places such as China, Japan, Korea, Hong Kong, the Philippines, Singapore, Australia, Holland, England, France, Germany, Canada, and the U.S. He also collaborates in chamber music with artists such as Cho-Liang Lin, Qian Zhou, Liang Chai, Jian Wang, and Hai-Ye Ni. In the field of composition, Du has produced many works for solo piano and chamber groups. He has successfully premiered, together with cellist Jian Wang, his Sonata for Cello and Piano in Tokyo and Kennedy Center in Washington D.C. His set of 24 preludes for the piano has just been published by People's Music Publishing House. Ning-Wu Du and wife Helen Sim formed the piano duo "Du & Sim" in 2000 and, in the same year, made their enthusiastically received debut at New York's Carnegie Recital Hall. In 2001, they were the top prizewinners and recipients of the "Baronessa Titetta Cafici Savarese Award" at the IBLA Grand Prize International Piano Competition in Italy. As a result, the duo was invited back to Sicily and gave highly acclaimed recitals in Catania and Ragusa. The duo’s activities since have included concerts in Tokyo (Opera City Hall), Seoul (as guest artists for the 10th anniversary of Chinese-Korean diplomatic relations), New York City (Lincoln Center and Society Hall), and various other cities worldwide. In 2004 the duo won the 1st Prizes of both the two pianos and four hands categories in the International Grieg Piano Competition of Oslo, Norway. Since 2005 they have been residing in China and have been teaching at the Xinghai Conservatory of Music in Guangzhou.