Steinway Artist Hsing-Chwen (Giselle) Hsin is one of the most esteemed pianists from Asia. Her predecessor Fou Ts’ong, internationally the most venerated concert pianist from China, recognized her as “a true artist”, and praised her for “reaching the highest realm in music, especially in the performances of Mozart”. While her live performances havebeen telecast and broadcast across Asia, England, Australia, Hong Kong, and the US, she actively appears in concertos, recitals, recordings, and interviews on air. As one of Taiwan’s leading pianists, she is also a piano professor at the National Yang Ming Chiao Tung University.
On CD, her recording of Mozart, Ravel and Chopin, published by Decca of Taiwan, has won her critical acclaim, resulting in the selection of Editor's Choice in the All Music Magazine. She has also won several competition prizes internationally. These include the prestigious Chappell Gold Medal from London's Royal College of Music, the Mozart Bicentenary Piano Competition of Asia, and New York's Chopin Piano Competition.
Among the great concert halls of the world, Dr. Hsinhas performed in London's Wigmore Hall, and both the Queen Elizabeth Hall and Purcell Room; New York’s 92nd Street Y, and Merkin Hall; California’s Lobero and Arlington Theatres (Santa Barbara);Hong Kong’s Cultural Center and City Hall;Guangzhou’s XinghaiConcert Hall and Hunan’s Cultural Center (China); and Taipei’s National Concert Hall and Novel Hall. She has also given numerous performances elsewhere in England, and in France, Austria, Italy, the Netherlands, United States, Australia, Hong Kong, Singapore and Taiwan.
Starting at a precocious age, she already embarked upon several major performances: at 13, a Wigmore Hall debut with her brother - violinist Ming; at 16, a concerto debut in Taipei under conductor Helen Quach, and another in the chamber concerto by Chausson in London’s Queen Elizabeth Hall. At 17, she performed as a duo with Sir Yehudi Menuhin in the D Minor Violin Sonata by Brahms at the Uppottery Festival. That same year she was also invited to give a solo recital debut in the Archbishop of York’s Palace.
In her native Taiwan, she was honored by its President to perform at the Presidential Hall Concert in 1994. Since her return home, she regularly appears in recitals and concertos with major orchestras there.
As a soloist in concertos, she has performed with USA’s Santa Barbara Symphony, Augustus Symphony, Long Island South Shore Symphony, Stony Brook Orchestra; Taiwan’s National Symphony Orchestra, Taipei Symphony, Taipei Philharmonic Orchestra, Taiwan Symphony Orchestra; the Guildhall String Ensemble of England, the Guangzhou and Hunan Symphony Orchestras of China, and the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra. In 2013 she collaborated in a tour with the Zurich Youth Orchestra performing Ravel’s Piano Concerto. Moreover, she gave the world premiere of Concertino for Piano and Orchestra, written in 1999 for her, by one of Taiwan’s foremost composers, Tsung-Hsien Yang, as well as a Taiwan Premier of Hans Tutschku’s Cells-Lines for piano and live-electronics in 2015. In 2016, her solo recital at the National Concert Hall in Taipei featured imageries for Ravel’s Gaspard de la Nuit, created by visual artist Chi-Min Hsieh on stage.
Past seasons include solo recitals in the United States, Australia, Hong Kong, Singapore and China. In 2007, she toured with the complete set of Granados’ Goyescas, and in the 2010-11 bicentennial seasons of Chopin, Schumann and Liszt, she gave tours on two sensational programs, featuring the works these great masters wrote for each other. Starting from 2014, her solo recitals aim to combine musical experience with visual creations in collaboration with artist colleagues.
Her set of two CDs published by National Chiao Tung University Press includes a Chinese/English dual language booklet of the pianist’s own essay From Bach to Mozart to Chopin: a Retrospective Chopin Approach. This has been widely recognized as a hallmark of integrating scholarship, with exquisite performance. Most recently, the release of her recording of The Complete Works for Solo Piano by Ma Shui-Long is monumental in the Taiwanese piano literature.
As an avid and versatile chamber music artist, collaborating in duo and chamber music recitals with internationally renowned first prize winners, including violinist Cho-Liang Lin (Queen Sofia), Qian Zhou (Jacques Thibaud) and Nai-Yuan Hu (Queen Elizabeth), she has also partnered with distinguished international artists, such as violinists James Buswell and Christophe Boulier; violist Hsin-Yun Huang; cellists Gary Hoffman, Antonio Lysy, Pi-Chin Chien, as well as pianists Gilbert Kalish and Pi-Hsien Chen. In 2005, Prof. Hsin founded a leading chamber group of Taiwan, the ChiaoTa Chamber Ensemble, representing NCTU’s Institute of Music and dedicated to the promotion, including the premiering, of classic and contemporary chamber music repertoire in Taiwan. In 2020, with violinist Ming-Feng Hsin and cellist Pi-Chin Chien, she formed a piano trio which performed in the National Concert Hall, Taipei, and toured Germany the next year, giving some of the first concerts after the pandemic.
As a faculty member, and Head of Performance at the National Chiao Tung University - Hsinchu, Taiwan, Ms. Hsin launched the first concert series in autumn 1993 - established since, as part of the tradition in the life of this university town (known as the “Silicon Valley of Taiwan”). She later generated one of the first graduate programs in performance in Taiwan’s higher education. As a founding member and Professor of NCTU’s Institute of Music (now NYCU - National Yang Ming Chiao Tung University), she has also served several terms as the Chairperson.
Prof. Hsin has adjudicated, lectured and given master classes nationwide and internationally, such as at SRIMF in Bavaria, Germany; the Coimbra World Piano Meeting, Portugal; Steinway and Yamaha Centers, Taiwan; National League of Performing Arts, New Jersey; Royal Northern College of Music, and the Yehudi Menuhin School, England; Performer’s Voice International Symposium, and the Yong Siew Toh Conservatory of Music, Singapore. In 2019 she was invited as a jury member at the International Piano Competition in Tel Aviv.
After winning First Prize at the National Piano Competition for juniors, Ms. Hsin – at 13 - went on to study as a protégé of Baroness Léni Fé Bland at England’s renowned Yehudi Menuhin School.
Further studies included a Performer’s Diploma from the Royal College of Music, a Master of Fine Arts from UCLA, and a Doctor of Musical Arts from SUNY Stony Brook. At each institution, she earned numerous prizes and scholarships, and obtained complete performance and scholarly degrees.
Ms. Hsin also attended prominent worldwide festivals. At the Tanglewood Music Festival in 1993 and 1994, she was a fellow and recipient of a special award for her outstanding performances of music from the Classic period to the 20th Century.
Other festivals she participated include the Vienna's Meisterkurse, the Aspen Festival, the Academy of the West in the US, chamber music courses at Prussia Cove - headed by Sandor Vegh, the Aldeburgh Festival's Britten-Pears School in England, and Trio di Trieste, at Siena’s Accademia Chigiana - Italy.
Hsing-Chwen is greatly indebted to many of the wonderful mentors and teachers she has worked under, among whom are Siao-Pei Yang, Louis Kentner, Simon Nicholls, Vlado Perlemuter, Kendall Taylor, Jerome Lowenthal, Andras Schiff, Ick-Choo Moon, Aube Tzerko, Leon Fleisher and Gilbert Kalish.
Combining their inspiration and her own further distillation in artistic search, she enjoys passing a healthy and stylistically impeccable way of playing to her students. While developing the students’ technical ease and prowess, she also firmly believes in the power and experience of chamber music towards fine musicianship.
Copyright © 2022 Hsing-Chwen Giselle Hsin