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Presidential citation issued for late music maestro Lee Tai-hsiang
Central News Agency
2014-01-27 11:33 PM
Taipei, Jan. 27 (CNA) A presidential citation was awarded posthumously to late Taiwanese musician Lee Tai-hsiang on Monday to recognize his contributions to Taiwan's music scene. Vice President Wu Den-yih presented the citation to Lee's family on behalf of President Ma Ying-jeou at a memorial service for Lee in Taipei. Lee was praised in the citation for his crossover music and touted as a "pioneer of Taiwan's avant-garde music." "He (Lee) is the last romantic genius of our time," said Lin Hwai-min, founder and artistic director of Taiwan's Cloud Gate Dance Theatre, at the memorial service attended by Lee's family and many prominent figures from the cultural, arts and music world. Lee's children and other musicians also performed several of his songs at the service to commemorate the music maestro. The 72-year-old musician passed away in his sleep on Jan. 2 at a hospital in New Taipei. He had been afflicted with Parkinson's disease and other ailments for more than two decades. Born into a family of the Amis indigenous tribe, Lee studied violin during his college years. He became the first chair violinist of the Taipei Symphony Orchestra following his graduation in 1964 and went on to study avant-garde music at San Diego State University in California in 1973. On his return a year later, Lee became conductor of the Taiwan Provincial Orchestra, but left two years later to devote his time to composing. He later went on to build a name as a composer of crossover music, honing his unique style of using classical techniques and instruments to create new arrangements of popular music and folk songs. From the late 1970s through the 1980s, Lee composed songs such as "The Olive Tree," "Farewell," "A Spring Sculpture," "The Answer," "The Mistake" and "Chrysanthemum Sigh." (By Hsu Hui and Christie Chen)
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