Concert with Chinese pianist helps UN celebrate anniversary

Updated: 2014-10-25 05:57

By AMY HE in New York(China Daily USA)

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Concert with Chinese pianist helps UN celebrate anniversary

Chinese pianist Lang Lang (center) addresses the media at the United Nations Headquarters in New York ahead of the "UN Day Concert 2014: Lang Lang and Friends".The UN celebrated the 69th anniversary of its founding on Friday. Amy He / China Daily

The United Nations celebrated the 69th anniversary of its founding on Friday in New York with the 2014 United Nations Day Concert, featuring renowned Chinese pianist Lang Lang, Grammy Award-winning musician Sting and an international youth orchestra.

United Nations Day is celebrated each year on Oct 24 and the UN Day Concert is held to reflect on the work of the United Nations and its agencies through the universal language of music. United Nations Day is part of United Nations Week, which runs from Oct 20-26.

The concert was presented in collaboration with the Lang Lang International Music Foundation, which was launched in 2008 to educate youth about classical music.

"I played on UN Day about five years ago, but to come back today to play Tchaikovsky and to play two songs with my favorite musician Sting - it's going to be spectacular," said Lang prior to the concert.

"I'm really proud as the founder of the Lang Lang International Music Foundation that we've had the great chance to work with the United Nations on this special occasion. We invited more than 80 kids from all around the world to perform at the United Nations Day youth orchestra and there are also kids from my foundation here as well," he added.

Lang was chosen as the United Nations Messenger of Peace last October to promote global education. He performed with the international youth orchestra that was assembled specifically for the concert and showcased musicians from five continents.

Lang said that as the UN Messenger of Peace, his job is very clear: "I like to work with the great UN to build more schools and to focus on education. We build schools, build music, and build culture. That will always be our goal, and I will always try to work very closely with the UN" on those initiatives, he said.

He said that he hopes the concert will go down as a "beautiful" memory in UN concert history, and that it will create a positive image to "unite everyone in the world to do better for world peace".

The Shenyang-born pianist released a new album of recordings on Sept 30 entitled The Mozart Album, the pianist's first ever all-Mozart recording.

Sting, the 16-time Grammy Award-winning singer, songwriter and composer, performed alongside Lang as his special guest at the UN concert.

"It is an honor to perform at the UN Day Concert. I'm a great supporter of the important work the UN does each and every day," said Sting in a statement.

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said that the United Nations is "needed more than ever at this time of multiple crises. At this critical moment, let us reaffirm our commitment to empowering the marginalized and vulnerable.

"On United Nations Day, I call on Governments and individuals to work in common cause for the common good," he said.