Exclusive Interview with Vivian Fang Liu

By Shirley Yumin Tan

The interview with Vivian Fang Liu took place on a very rainy evening. We were contemplating on canceling our session entirely due to the heavy down pour. However, we felt that we needed to persevere so we decided to continue as planned.  With no reservation and much satisfaction, we both ended up enjoying our time together, our interview.

So who is Vivian Fang Liu?  Below is a short synopsis of her accomplishments and performances:

Vivian Fang Liu holds a Masters Degree in Classical Piano Performance at New York University – NYU.  She has also won several prizes at piano and voice competitions in New York since 2002, including Second Prize of New York Empire Piano Competition in 2003; First Prize Piano Competition of New York Music Teacher’s Association in 2002; First Prize of New York WAMU Bank New Year Singing Competition. Vivian has performed in many concerts within the Tri-State area; venues including Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall, Hammerstein Hall, Steinway Hall, Super Star Theatre, and Hilton Grand Theatre, just to name a few. She was also invited to perform at the Gracie Mansion of Mayor Bloomberg for the NYCHA celebration in 2010. Her performance experience has enabled her to further her career by being accepted a judge for the 2010 Global Chinese Youth Musical Instrument Competition and adjudicated NYSSMA Festival 2010.

In character with Vivian’s desire to always be there to help, she demonstrated her sweet girl personality and picked us up in her car knowing that we had to haul over some heavy recording equipment with us in the middle of this rain storm.

We then had the privilege and honor to be given a private concert and listened to her play the piano and sang pop songs for us.  Then she would gingerly fool around with her beloved cat – all of these acts warmed my heart despite the humid, rainy evening.  Afterwards, on we went with the interview.

When did you start to play piano?

“I started to play piano when I was 5 years old. My mom thought I was too loud. She thought piano could calm me down in some way. It did. I looked just like a tomboy back by then.”

I knew you performed in many places including Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, and Grancie Mansion of Mayor Bloomberg. Which performance did you enjoy the most?

“I think the most enjoyable concert is the one I did in Carnegie Hall, which named Vivian Fang Liu Piano the solo recital. It was for my graduation. All my friends came to support me and the tickets were sold out. Also, it was my world premiere for the song Huang Guo Shu waterfall parable who composed by Roland R. Davis. Roland is a five time national award winning composer. I feel honored to have this song.”

I heard of your performance “Lost” for twice in live version. I really like it so much that it blew me away. Can you tell me what made you write this song?

“I got inspired from a girl called Cathy who suffered from the Haiti tsunami in 2010. She lost everything in the tsunami, her home, her parents and her dogs. However, when I saw her pictures in the newspapers. She had a big smile on her face which you could see hope. I was so touched that I composed this song.”

Was there anyone in your life who inspires you during your music tour?

“Yes, actually anyone can inspire me in some way. You inspire me, even my cat inspires me.” We both laugh. I said “I am only an audience. You are a super star.” Vivian thought for a while and said, “I think Eduardus Halim; my professor in college inspired me the most. He told me that I should play any kind of music I want, not only for classical music. Because music is not just notes, it has a story behind the notes. This is why I keep playing different types of music, pop, jazz, of course classical music. I always follow my heart now and I always put my whole passion into music because of his words.

What are your future goals?

“I don’t have a specific plan for my future. All I know is that it definitely relates to music. I love music and I want to spend my whole life and passion to chase and do better in it.”

Conclusion

I really enjoyed the conversation with Vivian. She is amazing, not only because of her talent in both the piano and singing, but also her incredible personality. She is always focused with everything she does. She puts her whole heart and soul in the area she loves. Vivian is currently working hard to improve her skill every day. I truly believe in her and the bright future with her career.

More about Vivian Fang Liu

Visit her Facebook at www.facebook.com/VivianFangLiu

Visit her website at www.vivianfangliu.net

 

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