Tiny trumpeter's ceremony melody hit right note

By LI HONGYANG | China Daily | Updated: 2022-02-09 09:18
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Under the guidance of a director, young trumpeter Zhu De'en (center) practices for the opening ceremony of the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics with understudies Liang Tong (left) and Liu Haoran on Jan 27. [Photo/Xinhua]

A 9-year-old solo trumpeter who performed at the opening ceremony of the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics practiced the melody about a thousand times before his big night at the Bird's Nest on Friday.

During the ceremony at the iconic venue, formally known as the National Stadium, Zhu De'en, a Beijing primary school student, played the song Me and My Motherland, well-known in China, as representatives from all walks of life and the nation's 56 ethnic groups passed the national flag to the flagpole.

Lasting more than a minute, the little trumpeter's confident performance deeply impressed audience members. One comment on a Sina Weibo micro-blog post about De'en said that as soon as his trumpet sounded out, the viewer almost cried. Another said De'en was adorable and excellent.

Zhu Guang, De'en's father and also a trumpet player, told Beijing News: "The trumpet is quite a suitable instrument for the song. The ceremony's director, Zhang Yimou, really knows how to touch Chinese people's feelings. I am grateful for the director who allowed my son to represent Chinese children to express their love for the motherland.

"At such a large ceremony in the Bird's Nest, even a professional adult performer could feel nervous. Enen (his son's nickname) succeeded in being calm to overcome the pressure."

The boy started learning how to play the trumpet in 2020.

"He has always been interested in learning the trumpet, but I didn't start teaching him very early," Zhu said. "Because since he was 4, he has been learning the piano with his grandmother, as its pitch is fixed and can help him train his ears."

In mid-November last year, Zhu was invited by the organizing committee for the Beijing Winter Olympics to find a child to play the trumpet at the ceremony.

Zhu sent a video of his son's performance, and De'en became one of three candidates for the role.

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