The Global Chinese Orchestra brings acclaimed Chinese musicians from across the globe to celebrate their journeys together

On a cold January day in 1989, an aspiring young conductor embarked on the Trans-Siberian express, leaving Beijing for Moscow. Armed with just a few phrases of basic German, a deep passion for classical music instilled by his musician parents, and an insatiable academic curiosity which had led him to read every Western classic in the Central Music Conservatory library, Lü Jia’s destination was West Berlin, a seven-day transcontinental trek across the Iron Curtain.

With the Cold War now long over, and many of Lü’s more modest hopes fulfilled, he has since embarked on a grander mission—the creation of a new orchestral group, drawing on the talents of the best ethnic Chinese musicians from across the world, aptly named the “Global Chinese Orchestra.”

The journey has not been easy.

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Homecoming Harmonies is a story from our issue, “The Masculinity Issue.” To read the entire issue, become a subscriber and receive the full magazine. Alternatively, you can purchase the digital version from the App Store.


Emily Conrad is a contributing writer at The World of Chinese.

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