Night Alley was commissioned by the 4th China International Piano Competition (2007) as the compulsory work.
Sometimes, I hear familiar music unexpectedly – in a film, or in a night alley where diaphanous sounds pour out of someone’s home. Though the power this music has to affect me has long faded, it suddenly takes on a new meaning, texture, and color. These fragmented sounds, spreading like a fragrance or dream, complete themselves in my imagination, while also arousing in me myriad threads of thought.
Night Alley attempts to capture such an unpredictable and poetic realm.
In an essay called The Class and Piano by the artist Chen Dan-Qing, the author writes, “In Beijing, Shanghai, and Nan Jing, I had several overheard encounters with the piano music of Bach and Chopin in the deep darkness of the commune corridors…strangely, listening to the renowned masters in the Lincoln Center or the Carnegie Hall is not as deliciously moving and enchanting as secretly enjoying music in the austere and unfamiliar domestic surroundings of a commune corridor, even if it is only from the first attempts of a young child.”
I can’t deny that I am also very fond of this kind of surprise or magic moment, which arises only from chance. One can never demand for this experience, one can only wait.
I have dedicated it to Madame Zhou Guang-Ren.