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Hao Liu: Finding Love and Courage with Music

Hao Liu, Si-Yo Young Artist™, remembers well what drew him to Si-Yo. “In May 2018 I held my first piano concert at Rutgers University in New Jersey, and I was very pleased to meet members of the Foundation there,” he recalls. “What impressed me was learning about Si-Yo’s efforts in community outreach and music education.”

Music education has been a major part of the young musician’s life since he was a child growing up in Chifeng, Inner Mongolia, China. Despite permanently losing his vision soon after birth due to retinopathy of prematurity (ROP), his talent at the keyboard was evident at age 4—and he has been dedicated to his craft ever since.

“The piano is my best friend who listens to me and helps me tell my stories; I come up with endless compositions to express my feelings,” he explains.

Citing famed Chinese pianist Lang Lang as a major influence, he has even crossed paths with the source of his inspiration multiple times, such as being chosen to perform with him in the Lang Lang International Music Foundation’s 101 Pianist Program in 2017. Mr. Liu also played the duet “Colorful Clouds Chasing the Moon” with him for the “I Want to Play in the Spring Festival Gala” broadcast by CCTV in 2018.

Other achievements include winning the "Life Goes On—The Tara Award" at Vienna City Hall in 2016, where he performed with the Vienna Haydn Symphony Orchestra; having his first solo recital at the Beijing Zhongshan Concert Hall in 2016; and earning first place in the amateur finals of the Beijing 7th Steinway National Youth Piano Competition in 2015. He has also been featured on programs such as CCTV’s “Lesson 1” and “The Genius Stage.”

“I have been so encouraged by audiences’ applause and am grateful to have received much kind support on my path of learning,” he says.

Indeed, his perseverance and ability to delight crowds have inspired many in his home country; in addition to dozens of Chinese media outlets covering him over the course of his young career, his life is the basis for two films—“Dream Chasing” and “Blind Piano Boy.”

As for his aspirations, he hopes that his relationship with Si-Yo will allow him to enrich people’s lives through music. “It is my great pleasure to be one of the Foundation’s resident artists, and I hope to make new friends and learn from my Si-Yo peers,” he says. “With Si-Yo’s influence and programs, we can bring music to more people, especially those from underserved and disadvantaged groups. Together we can share our passion for classical music to make life more beautiful.

“I was born blind, but through the power of music I can feel love, I can feel courage, and I can see a bright world.”