Biola Conservatory professors travel to China to teach and perform

Biola staff and faculty traveled to minister and perform throughout China’s eastern provinces

Mar. 17, 2012 By Abbey Bennett

Biola's Conservatory of Music director and two associate professors traveled to China last November, sponsored by the Hunan Province Song and Dance Theater and California International Compass Education Foundation.

Conservatory Director George Boespflug, along with associate professors Marlin Owen and Bob Feller, spent two and a half weeks teaching and performing throughout the province.

The three were invited by the Theater’s orchestra director Timothy Su, a well-known conductor throughout China. He coordinated the itinerary and served as their host for the duration of the trip.

“We worked with the Chinese National Military Orchestra in Beijing and taught lessons and presented masterclasses for students from Xian Conservatory; Zhengzhou University; The Foreign Language School, Zhengzhou; the Central South University, College of Music; and the Beijing Gloria Music Training Center,” Boespflug said.

The trio also performed a solo concert at Central Southern University, College of Music in Changsha that attracted a standing-room-only audience.

In addition, Boespflug, Owen and Feller met and dined with the Henan Province Deputy Director of Education while in Zhengzou, and the Hunan Province Minister of Culture in Changsha.

“We met many wonderful Chinese musicians and hope to at some point return to nurture personal and professional relationships and again perform and teach,” Boespflug said.

Invited to travel again next year, the faculty members are beginning to consider dates for future performances.  They are particularly interested in cultivating their relationship with the Beijing Gloria Music Training Center, a school that provides training for church musicians from around the country.

“The need for educational assistance is great and Biola’s Conservatory of Music has tremendous resources that could help  facilitiate the Training Center's current programs,” Boespflug said. “For example, we are exploring the possibility of sharing online materials - developed by adjunct-faculty member, Jeff Askew - that could be translated to Chinese and be extremely helpful in training Chinese church musicians. We’ll see what the Lord has in store.”

Written by Abbey Bennett, Media Relations Intern. For more information, contact Jenna Bartlo, Media Relations Coordinator, at 562.777.4061 or at

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