America’s musical family and their 40 year friendship with China | Encounters in China

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Published on 1 Dec 2020, 5:00
David Stern (USA) met Wang Jian (China) by chance in 1979 - it was the start of a lifelong friendship that changed the world of classical music.

They first met when David visited Beijing with his father, famed violinist Isaac Stern. Wang Jian was just nine years old and was asked to play the cello for Mr Stern. The moment Wang Jian drew his bow, David knew he was a special musician.

Wang Jian went on to study at Yale University in America, where David was also studying music. They became close friends as David helped Wang Jian get to grips with Ameican culture.

Today, Wang Jian is a world-famous cellist and David is a renowned conductor. They both travel the world performing music – and even occasionally perform together.

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