Musician Spotlight: Wan Rosalind Wong, Piano
Wan Rosalind Wong has been a musician with AYS for the past three years and currently studies composition under Richard Danielpour. She aspires to become an established composer, and has many years of experience and education to launch her career! Read more about Rosalind and her anticipated performance at Sounds About Town February 8th during Camille Saint-Saëns’ piece “Organ” Symphony when she plays on Walt Disney Concert Hall’s infamous organ.
When did you start playing your instrument?
At a very young age! There is photo evidence of me ‘playing’ at age 2, but obviously that was just for fun.
What do you like about the piano?
I love harmony above all else. I love that the piano has the power to express heart-wrenching tension and release with chords.
How long have you been a member of AYS? What is your most memorable AYS concert?
This is my 3rd year in AYS. Every AYS concert renews my love affair with the orchestra. Normally pianists rarely get to be in the trenches with the orchestra. I find each concert with AYS better than the last!
Are there any musicians or composers who have inspired you?
My favorite jazz pianist is Erroll Garner. My favorite composer is Claude Debussy. These two monumental figures really shaped how I listen to music.
How do you prepare for a concert?
I start with understanding my role in the piece programmed. What is the context for every hit, phrase, and counterpoint? Then, I memorize my entrances in the context of the orchestration and the musical material. At rehearsal, I make a mental note of how the conductor interprets certain repeating materials that make its round in the orchestration. Then, I make sure I blend well with the orchestra when I play my part!
Have you played an organ before? How is it different than playing a piano?
I was trained in Lutheran Liturgy growing up, and was the organist at a tiny church for more than 5 years. Can I just say, lots and lots of Bach and sacred chorales! Playing on the organ is a whole different sort of beautiful.
What are you most looking forward to for the upcoming Sounds About Town concert on February 8th?
In addition to having the great pleasure of performing on the Walt Disney Concert Hall organ, I enjoy the camaraderie of everyone playing in the orchestra. The buzz around this concert is palpable!
What is your dream job?
My dream job is to compose music for documentary films.
What do you like to do outside of playing for AYS?
Is it fair that my hobby outside of music is still music? I love creating and composing music. I also enjoy participating in music ensembles of any genre, such as rock, Latin, jazz, Celtic… you name it.
About Wan Rosalind Wong
Los Angeles-based pianist Wan Rosalind Wong has been awarded numerous scholarships and competition prizes by foundations such as New West Symphony and the Getty Foundation. Her live performances have been featured in concerts at major west coast museums, cultural centers, and concert halls. Rosalind studied music at UCLA with Inna Faliks and Walter Ponce. She received her Masters in 2015 and her Doctorate in 2017. She studied music hermeneutics with Roger Savage, and currently studies composition with Richard Danielpour. Rosalind taught music theory, poetry, piano, music history, and music composition privately, at UCLA, and also at Larchmont Charter School. For more information, visit her website at sophosmusic.org/rosalind.