About Dennis Wu
Who are you?
I am a freelancer on everything about classical music in Hong Kong. It is hard to put down what I work precisely in one or two sentences because, as you may know, life working as a freelancer means you have to work pretty much on anything that is up and available. But one thing is certain (beside taxes and death): I work most of the time on and for music.
What are you doing in your work time?
I spend most of my time writing and some other working on projects. By writing, I write not only blogs, but also concert previews, promotional copies, critiques, programme notes, record reviews and artist interviews. I have talked to a lot of internationally renowned artists, including pianists Hélène Grimaud, Yundi Li, Valentin Lisitsa, Alexandre Tharaud and Yuja Wang, violinists Sarah Chang, Renaud Capuçon and Patricia Kopatchinskaja, guitarist Yang Xuefei, cellists Qin Liwei, Valentin Radutiu and Julian Lloyd Webber, composers Tan Dun, Karl Jenkins and many other great names Laurence Dreyfus, Iestyn Davies, Christian Lindberg, Jordi Savall and Jaap van Zweden. I also have some of my time writing music as well, creating new works or arranging old works for new performances.
The other half of my time works on various projects which are diverse in nature. I give talks for concerts and on special topics like music appreciation and music criticism, and I work for RTHK Radio 4, presenting programmes and producing concert OBs (outside broadcasts). I also manage some digital marketing campaigns for Hong Kong Arts Festival, which is marginally musical related but, as a whole, the Festival is a fabulous series of performing arts event here. I am also involved in curating several special concerts which involve a lot of musical programming.
Click here for a full biography of me.
What is this blog about?
I started blogging in 2003, first on Blogger and then quickly moved on to a self-hosted MovableType. Known as Bagatelles, it’s a journal of diverted things, from concert reviews to wine report, from musical discussions to computer programming debug notes. All in all, it’s a mess.
The second-generation blog started on WordPress and was called Rejuvenation. First entry in 2006 it’s when I started blogging in Chinese and, at the same time, writing a weekly music column in Takungpao.
This generation of bilingual blog is called Blogging Classical Music in Hong Kong (what a damn long name). It is a collection of articles in print in various Hong Kong media, as well as online-only concert reviews, music scene gossips and rumblings. It started in 2011 and, originally on two WordPress blogs, merged into one in 2012.
Who is your most favourite composer?
I have spent much time immersing into the music of Gustav Mahler and devoted quite a lot of research time during my postgraduate year to him, instead of writing music as my degree would require. I am particularly fond of Maurice Ravel and Béla Bartók, two immensely different characters united only by their musical imagination. As a composer I find newer music not as interesting as the older one, but I have special inclination to the life and work of Olivier Messiaen and, if I have to name one living man at least, John Adams.