The 18th
Music Festival at Walnut Hill 2009
Foundation for Chinese Performing Arts:
T: 781-259-8195, F: 781-259-9147

Program Updates ( ►details )

July 31 to August 21, 2009 (check in 7/30/2009, departure 8/21/2009)
Contact in Taiwan: Mrs. Pi-Chuan Chen Lai,
Tel/Fax: 02-2341-7727, Email: 

Dorm: Highland
Schedule of concerts and field trips: (Subject to Change, class schedules are not listed here)
*Open to public. Students attendance required with exceptions.

Dear Fellow Students,
(Please share this with your parents and teachers.)

In about two weeks, our music festival will begin. I am excited and looking forward to welcome you all. With your collaboration, we will have a great three weeks together. We have 39 students plus one mother this year, that exceed the dorm space given to us. I am working on the housing details to make sure you are all safe and comfortable. Other items that we are working on are: piano rental and tuning, evening snacks, student data, transportation, field trips, and etc. There will be last minute adjustments, please be patient and flexible. Thank you.

There are a few reminders that I would like to have your attention:

1. Please bring with you a lot of smile, flexibility, and enthusiasm to learn, and we will provide plenty of fresh air, best teachers, and good memories. Please read the “General Information” again and pack light.

2. The official language of this festival is English. Translation will be provided only if needed. An E-dictionary is useful. However, after the first 10 days, I will expect you could handle it by yourself. Both your Chinese and English names will be used by the teachers.

3. This is a three weeks of intensive musical learning, not vacation. Mr. Nai-Yuan Hu will teach all violin majors the first day July 31 with 20 min each. All other classes will start right away. You do not have time for adjusting jetlag. You should sleep and rest as much as you could on the airplane over to reserve energy, you will be busy after your arrival. The first one or two days may seem long and boring, but it will soon be changed.

4. Nothing is scheduled for July 30. My assistants and I will be back and forth from airport and bus/train stations to meet students. After dinner, we may (to be confirmed) have an informal welcome gathering at Amelia Hall (at the first floor of Highland dorm.)

5. (depends on the arrival details of all students, we may do this either on 7/31 or 8/1): Please prepare a 30 seconds self introduction in English. Unless everyone in the room could speak and understand Chinese, we will use English. We will also review safety issues, signups for field trips, students-on-duty, and practice rooms rules at this meeting.

6. Most likely, at the first or second evening (very late), when everyone is tired and sleeping, we could have an un-announced fire drill conducted by school security department. Everyone has to leave the dorm quickly, get outside within 90 seconds with shoes on. The security guards will stand outside with a stop-watch and do a head count. We have to pass this test, otherwise, it will be repeated at another un-announced evening, until we pass it. This is a serious matter please take a note of it.

7. Walnut Hill School will collect from each of you a $75 key deposit when you check in. it will be refund to you when you return your key at departure.

8. Please let me know as soon as possible if you are going to participate in the concerto competition. These students will have piano lessons on Ravel’s Piano Concerto in G major first, and work with my assistants: Yinfei Wang, Hsiao-Ling Chang, and Haobing Zhu for accompaniment.

So far there are 8 who will participate, and 11 “maybe”:
Yes: Wesley Chu, Peter Chuang-Chuang Fang, David Po-Wei Ger, Qiuning Huang, Siu-Yu Li, Beth Yan Cheng, Bo Peng, Virginia Si-Min Ouyang.
Maybe: Jessica Yin-Shou Chen,Rosana San-Lan Chen, Sonia Hu, Angelia Yujie Kang, Lixia Li, Kate Liu, Sunny Yu-Yang Wei, Xiaopei Xu, Cun-Mo Yin, Haobing Zhu, Judy Chiu-Yi Wu.
Please confirm and we welcome more piano major to participate.

9. Aug 10 is reserved for those who would like to have a solo performance (in addition to the Gala concerts on Aug 20). There are many who would like to do so. This is, of course, upon the approval by our faculty members. Everyone will perform at the Gala concerts on 8/20. All the new chamber music you are assigned to will be performed as well.

10. Except pianists and composers, everyone (including 1 violin minor) will join the Longwood Symphony Orchestra’s rehearsals and performances. You could check online at for more details. The orchestra scores will be available online soon, you should download and start practice. Mr. Jonathan McPhee, conductor of Boston Ballet and Longwood Symphony, is a world renowned master and he has high expectation from all orchestra members.

11. This is a festival of NO DRUG, NO SMOKING, NO ALCOHOL. Any violation will result in an immediate expel without any excuse.

12. This is also a camp of environmental/energy conservation conscious. Please conserve energy, recycle, and do not waste any resources. You should bring a water bottle that you can refill and use daily.

13. Please read the attached schedule updates, and general information again and let me know if you have any questions. The daily private lessons/chamber coaching will be posted and updated daily, with very short notice. Please be prepared and be flexible. A sample from 2008 is attached for your reference only.

14. All classrooms are open, you are welcome to sit in and listen to other students’ lessons. Proper dress code is required.

15. The dorm room assignment, chamber music audition schedule on Saturday 8/1 will be ready and emailed to you soon. Highland is the dorm we are staying in this year. It is a nice wooden building over 100 years old with no elevator and no air-condition. Buildings of that age are very common in New England. You have to carry your own luggage upstairs, so be prepared when packing. Pack light and efficiently. Most important, bring with you a lot of smile and cheerfulness, an open mind and a desire of willingness to work hard.

16. I have ordered 10 copies, the English original “Piano Pieces” by Mr. Russell Sherman at $20 each (we paid for your tax and shipping). If you want to buy one and have his signature after his master class on Aug 16, you should email me now and reserve one. You could also order your own, or buy a Chinese edition and ask for his signature.

17. Let me know if you want to be roommate with someone. We cannot guarantee but will try our best to meet your request. Right now only Emma Liu asked to share room with Sonia Hu and Kiko Hao.

18. You should bring your own tooth brush, shampoo and etc. If you run out of the supply, you could get it from local stores easily.

19. There are parents and students in Taiwan who probably could answer most of your questions regarding campus safety, the neighborhood, and etc. They are Mrs. Huang (Jean Huang’s mom: 07-2822-628, 02-8211-1409), Mrs. Lo (Chi-Wei Lo’s mom: 07-726-3365). I am available to answer your calls. My home is 781-259-8195, cell 617-968-7094.

20. Highland dorm is wireless till 12 midnight. The computer lab at the Academic and Technology Center is available to us during office hours. We have iron and ironing board in Highland also. Again please keep everything nice and clean. Do your share to recycle, save energy and do not waste any food, water, paper, electricity and etc.

21. The chamber audition schedule for Sat August 1 will be ready soon. The schedule may have some minor adjustment if the teachers (viola, flue, cello) want to give you a lesson on the same day. You should play some piece that is most comfortable with you, but be prepared to play additional one of different style. Each person has about 5 min. You should come to Boswell Hall at least 10 min before your turn, have instrument out of the case, and wait inside. Mr. Lynn Chang and other teachers are doing chamber grouping now, but will make rearrangement after the audition.

22. If you also taking piano or violin as minor, you have to be heard at this audition for your minors. This is an important audition, you should dress up for it. However, don’t over dress, it is not an on stage performance. If you are confused, ask me or my assistants and we will explain.

23. Don’t forget to bring your swimming suit and enjoy the nice pool. Bring something for the bug bites. Gentlemen may want to bring some short sleeve shirts and polo shirts. T-shirts are not allowed in concerts, master classes, and formal gatherings. You can NOT have anything that might consider fire hazard, such as lighter, matches, iron, rice cooker, and etc.

24. Check online for the best calling cards and bring it with you. There is one pay phone on the first floor of Highland dorm, and one at the dining hall.

You can buy Skype credits online and install it into your Skype account. As long as there is internet access, the program is able to make phone calls on computers, and the quality is really good.

25. I hope you will meet your life-long friends here. You should also take the advantage to learn as much as you could from our outstanding faculty members. Their teachings are not just limited in the classrooms, but also at the dining table, on the bus, or by the swimming pool. I hope you will learn from all teachers, to accept the challenge exploring ideas that might be different from your previous experiences.

26. Proper manner in writing emails: You could email me in either English or Chinese. When email to someone who is older or senior, such as your teachers or your parents’ friends, uncle/aunt… always address them properly. You should start your letter as:
Dear Ms. Chambless (or Mrs. Chan, Teacher Tan, Tan lao-shih, Professor Chen, Mr. Chang,….)
Do not use their first name directly without their permission.
Always end your letter with: Sincerely, Best Regards, Regards….

Remember, this is a letter send to your teachers or senior by internet, instead of by post office with a stamp. It is not a text message, MSN, Face book messages to your classmates. It is always more formal in writing then in verbal conversation. If you are writing in Chinese, the same rules apply.

It may seem that we have a lot of “rules”. However, this is a short 3-weeks, I hope you could “suffer” through it. Thank you for your support and understanding, and see you soon. More emails will follow.


Cathy Chan (譚嘉陵老師)
Home: 781-259-8195, Cell: 617-968-7094

The piano concerto this year is: Ravel: Piano Concerto in G Major. (Sheet music published by Durand, not available electronically)
Below is a sample on Youtube - by Landon Baumgard, winner of the CSUN (California State University Northbridge) concerto competition, performs the Ravel G Major concerto with the CSUN Symphony Orchestra.

Ravel Piano Concerto in G Major (1/3) Ravel Piano Concerto in G Major (2/3) Ravel Piano Concerto in G Major (3/3)

Dear Fellow Students of 2009 Music Festival,

Welcome to our program. In about 10 days we will meet you at the airport and start our three weeks musical journey together. I am very excited and this is the first welcome letter to you. Please read the attached information carefully. Email or call me if you have any questions.

Please visit our website to see video from last year, and updated information online.

Please also join our Face Book (Chinese Performing Arts) and watch the event announcements at Face Book (Foundation for Chinese Performing Arts, name Cathy Chan).

Invite your friends to join us also.

Attached below are :
1, general information, please read again
2, welcome letter 1, 2009
3, schedule updates (it will be updated again)
4, sample of 2008 class schedule

In the next email, I will send the chamber audition schedule and dorm room assignment. And before you leave home, I will update you with airport information.

Please let me know:
1, any roommate request? It is for my reference only, not guarantee. There are only 3 or 4 single rooms in the dorm, and it will be assigned to my assistants.
2, confirm whether you are entering the concerto competition (see the list in the welcome letter).
3, whether you want to reserve a copy of “Piano Pieces” by Mr. Sherman at $20 each

Thank you and see you soon.

Cathy Chan
Home: 781-259-8195, cell: 617-968-7094
Please consider that there is a 24 hours time difference between Asia and United States