Kent State rings in Chinese New Year with orchestra performance

Ben Miller

Kent State’s Chinese Students and Scholars Association celebrated Chinese New Year at 7 p.m. Friday in Ludwig Recital Hall with an orchestra performance.

The Kent State Orchestra played for more than 100 people and featured both vocal and violin solos. Both graduate and undergraduate students in the Hugh A. Glauser School of Music are a part of the Kent State Orchestra. This is one of two or three concerts the orchestra planned on performing this semester.

“It was an impressive night all-around,” said Tyler Hague, graduate student of physics. “My favorite part was when the orchestra took the stage and crashed in with the first few notes of [the ‘Carmen Suite No. 2].’”

Eunseok Seo, graduate conducting student, helped conduct the song “Carmen Suite No. 2.” Seo said he did not get as much time to prepare for Friday’s performance as most conductors.

“I learned I had to do this job tonight, this morning,” Seo said. “That’s part of the job of graduate assistant conductor.”

Staff accompanist for the performance, Donna Oberlin, said she enjoyed the performance.

“I found it fascinating how the music tonight, and the melodies, had strong American influences,” Oberlin said. “It shows how much Chinese composers love westernized music.”

Two students performed solos at the concert. Yang Zeng, senior music major, was one of the soloists. He performed “Concerto for Violin and Orchestra in A minor, Op. 53” by Antonín Dvo?ák as his solo piece. Zeng will perform another solo in Ludwig Recital Hall on March 29.

The CSSA provided a small buffet in the foyer outside Ludwig Recital Hall for students and guests alike after the concert. Food included combinations of traditional Chinese cuisine such as lo mein, spicy beef, jalapeño fried chicken, wontons, chicken fried rice and white rice.

The Chinese Students and Scholars Association plans to celebrate actual Chinese New Year Sunday with a gallery in the Student Center Ballroom, ringing in the year of the water snake.

Contact Ben Miller at [email protected].