Internationally Acclaimed Pianist David Lai Performs for CSM’s Ward Virts Concert Series May 9

May 5, 2021

Internationally Acclaimed Pianist David Lai Performs for CSM’s Ward Virts Concert Series May 9

The College of Southern Maryland (CSM) presents the Ward Virts Concert Series Sunday, May 9 at 3 p.m. with a free, virtually streamed concert by Pianist David Lai.

Jiajun ‘David’ Lai was born in Hangzhou, China in 1996 and lost his sight at birth. He became interested in music at a very early age, and started learning the piano at the age of four-and-a-half years. In August of 2005, through the help of renowned Chinese pianist and educator, Professor Guangren Zhou, Lai moved to Beijing with his family, and started studying the piano under the instruction of Dongli Mao.

Lai was enrolled at the high school affiliated with the Central Conservatory of Music in 2009, and graduated in July of 2015. In March of the same year, he passed the major exam of the Central Conservatory of Music, and the national College Entrance Exam in June, becoming the first person to use braille to take the exam in Beijing. Lai went on to graduate from the Central Conservatory of Music, with a B.A. in piano performance and recently graduated with his Master's degree from the College-Conservatory of Music, University of Cincinnati.

“Lai combines brilliant technique with a special knack for conveying the emotion of the music,” reported ABC News in a 2018 interview with the artist.

Lai was the recipient of the second prize as well as the audience favorite distinction at Boulder Bach Festival's World Bach Competition 2020.

The Ward Virts Concert Series celebrates the life and talent of Ward Virts, a talented Southern Maryland pianist who died suddenly in 1993. A group of Ward’s friends and classmates conceived the Ward Virts Piano Project to bring the love of life, beauty and music that Ward embodied to a new generation of Southern Maryland students, performers and appreciative audiences. Through the years, many of the visiting concert series’ musicians performed on the world-class handcrafted Bosendorfer Grand Piano, a gift to CSM’s Prince Frederick Campus from the Ward Virts Piano Project.

The CSM Ward Virts Concert Series is presented by sponsors CSM Foundation, Dr. and Mrs. Henry Virts, and Stovy and Anne Brown. The series is also supported by the Arts Council of Calvert County and the Maryland State Arts Council.

Tune into CSMDTube, CSM’s YouTube channel, May 9, any time after 3 p.m. to enjoy Lai’s performance.

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