Just arrived - Wen Hung

von Jeff Schiltz
Wen Hung

When and how did you first hear about the OPL?

I don't remember clearly but approximately about 10 years ago; I took a small trip from Hamburg to visit a friend in Saarbrücken and he told me there's a small country called Luxembourg just next door that we could visit. We took the bus to come and then he showed me the Philharmonie and told me that the orchestra is very good.

What was the most emotional moment during your trial period?

When Patrick (Patrick Coljon, Head of Orchestra) called us to announce the results. Even though I was fairly considering everything went well, the moment when our chef conductor Gustavo told me the result, I didn’t expect to be so emotional but, I almost started crying.

Is there a concert that you can specifically remember from that year?

I remember the first concert very clearly. It was the new year’s concert 2022. I was quite nervous for this very first week, but I remember being next to my very nice colleague Gayané, she eased my stress and also made me think that the atmosphere here must be nice.

Is there any piece of advice you would share with a musician during their trial year?

My advice would be to focus on the basics meaning to be well prepared, to be kind and reliable for your colleagues. And be yourself.

Do you remember what pieces you had to play for your audition?

I remember there were Mozart’s Concerto in D Major and Tchaikovsky’s Concerto. Then some excerpts like Don Juan and Mozart Symphony no. 39, Tchaikovsky Nussknacker and the scherzo from Schumann Symphony no.2 .

And you have been living in Darmstadt?

Yes, I lived there for almost 2 years.

Are there any differences between the orchestra there and the OPL?

Yes, the central difference is the language because most of the time when I was in Darmstadt we spoke German. And here, it is very international so you can speak almost any language. This really changes the relationships between colleagues because it’s so multicultural. And I believe this also changes the atmosphere.

You substituted for a range of different orchestras. What challenges did you face in having to adapt to each orchestra?

I like playing in orchestras, and I think I have gained also quite lots of experiences to learn how to operate with others. However, it still gives me some fresh feelings each time playing with different people next to me and with different conductors.

Who has been the most influential teacher for you?

That must be Frau Krüger from München. She was a Konzertmeisterin in the Staatskapelle Dresden and then she played for the Münchener Philharmoniker. She’s 80 years old and so she really has a lot of experiences in teaching and preparing students for auditions. She has changed my life and my playing a lot because she not only taught me violin but she’s also a life mentor for me.

Do you have a favourite solo part in the repertoire?

This reminds me one of the solo excerpts from La Bohème by Puccini, which is such a beautiful melody. I remember preparing this one for the audition in Darmstadt. When I was practicing it, I was really in love with this excerpt and in fact, I have always loved this opera. I enjoyed playing it on stage and I also received good feedback from my colleagues. So, this really meant something to me.

How long have you been playing your instrument?

I started when I was 9 years-old so around 23 years in total that I have been playing.

And how did you come to play this specific instrument?

Initially, I started playing piano when I was 4 years old, and I was interested in continuing. So, my parents helped me enter a music class, it was a special class in elementary school. We had to complete an exam and choose a second instrument to play. I wanted to choose flute in the beginning but somehow, I don’t know why exactly, my parents loved violin so much that they persuaded me to play violin instead of the flute.

Is there a specific venue you would like to perform at together with the OPL?

The first place that comes to mind would be the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam. I went there for the first time a few months ago and went to a concert there. The acoustic was amazing, and they come out from behind the stage, walking down the stairs, which is really special.

How has your life changed since moving to Luxembourg?

The multiculturalism is one of my favorite parts in Luxembourg. And I feel like I am hundred percent myself here.

Is there anything in particular that you enjoy about Luxembourg?

I like how peaceful and clean it is. I also really like how beautiful the Philharmonie building is. Every day when the tram arrives at the station of the Philharmonie, I feel very lucky to work here.

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