征文43 ▏Alonso: I fell in love with Chinese music

家外之家 2021
征文43 ▏Alonso: I fell in love with Chinese music


Name : Alonso Quijano姓名:阿隆索Country of Origin : Ecuador


Occupation : Economist / Ocarina musician


Years in China : 5 years


Alonso playing the ocarina. Photo source

How did your journey in China begin?


My journey began in 2011 when I started studying at the Confucius Institute of Ecuador. I fell in love with the language right away and committed to studying Mandarin Chinese until I could speak the language perfectly. This started a journey that will last forever.

2011 年,我开始在厄瓜多尔孔子学院学习,我的中国之旅也由此开始。我一下子就爱上了汉语并开始学习,立志精通这门语言。从此,我开启了一段永恒的旅程。

In 2012, I got a scholarship to study Chinese in Beijing for a year. In my year as a Chinese language student, I fell in love with Chinese music, and started to learn how to play the Chinese ocarina—a ceramic vessel flute—from Lai Dafu the president of the Chinese Ocarina Association. How lucky I was! I was invited to be his student without free of charge! That is how cool Chinese people are.


That year in China changed who I was and were my career was going. I was originally an Economics-major student, and suddenly, my focus changed to Chinese traditional music.


In 2013, I came back to participate in the Chinese Bridge Competition broadcasted on CCTV and got second place! One year later, I was invited to come on a music tour and performed in various cities. Finally, in 2016 I came to record my ocarina music album and study a Master’s degree in music in Xiamen University. A realized dream!


Alonso和钢琴家Juan Pacheco在厦门的一场独奏会
Alonso Quijano and Juan Pacheco (pianist) after one of their recitals in Xiamen

What fascinates you about China or Xiamen?


As a music major student, I spent a lot of time attending and performing in concerts and recitals. What I love the most about Xiamen is its connection with music. Gulangyu––an island located East of Xiamen––is known as the “piano island”. It boasts the only museum dedicated solely to pianos and one of the most beautiful concert halls I have ever been to.


Gulangyu is also home to some of the best musicians in China, so come here if you are a music lover like me!


What is your unique China story?


One memory that I hold close to my heart is a concert I performed in 2017 at Xiamen University for the launch of my music album. I performed with some of my closest friends––people who I have met through music and share wonderful experiences with. I will never forget the joy and fun I had on that day.

我心中珍藏的一段记忆是 2017 年在厦门大学为庆祝我发布专辑而举办的音乐会。我和最要好的朋友同台表演——他们是通过音乐认识的,我们会一起分享有趣的经历。我永远不会忘记那一天带给我的喜悦。

One of my favorite tunes in the album is called ‘Waves of Gulangyu’––the most representative song of Xiamen. If you ever come to Xiamen, you will hear this song everywhere.


A fun fact about Ecuado


Alonso met the Diabluma in China!

El Diablo Huma or Diabluma is a folkloric character which is part of the customs and legends of the northern highlands of Ecuador. The Haya Huma, in Kichwa language, is considered the leader of the community and a powerful warrior, possessing the vital energy of nature. For this reason, he appears symbolically in the festivities related to the harvests, such as the Festival of the Sun or the Inti Raymi, the festivities of San Pablo, San Juan and San Pedro.

El Diablo Huma也被称为Diabluma,是一个民间传说人物,也是厄瓜多尔北部高原习俗和神话的象征。在斯瓦希里语中,Haya Huma代表着社会的领袖和强大的战士,拥有大自然的神力。因此,他会作为一种象征,出现在与收获相关的节日中,如太阳节(也叫Inti Raymi节),圣巴勃罗节、圣胡安节和圣佩德罗节。

Information about Diabluma translated from Spanish from this source.


作者:阿隆索 翻译:潘泽彬

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