Richard Bernstein: A Cultural Ambassador Bred in Cultural Revolution
From the New York Times:
Wang Jin, the chief guest conductor of the Komische Oper, or Comic Opera, here remembers how he started violin lessons in his Beijing roughly 30 years ago.
“We had to put a mute on the violin,” he said, “and we drew heavy curtains over the windows, so nobody could see or hear from outside. My mother was a pianist at the Central Philharmonic Orchestra and we lived in the orchestra’s dormitory, so it wasn’t hard to find somebody to teach me.
“But even practicing scales was forbidden,” he said, recalling that at that moment in China there was a major propaganda campaign against Western classical music.