Itzhak Perlman treated me as a musician, not just as a student
The person who has influenced me and changed my musical perspective the most is the violinist Itzhak Perlman. I grew up listening to his recordings – he was to me like the Beatles were to other people. It never occurred to me, as a kid living in Taiwan, that one day I’d actually meet and perform with him.
The first time I met him was at his summer music school, the Perlman Music Program, in 2006. He heard me play, then invited me to perform with him in Mozart’s G minor Viola Quintet the following year. It was like a dream come true. I was playing first viola and I was nervous in the first rehearsal, but he treated me as a musician, not just as a student, and said things to make me laugh and relax. To become successful, young artists need the right people to support their musical careers. Perlman gives students the chance to meet him and work with him: he always finds a way to give something back to the audience. What he does for the next generation is very important.
Perlman has influenced me the most by being a well-rounded musician and artist. Not only does his music touch people, but his words are always so intellectual. Working with him has been an inspiration.
Photo: Ke Ke