Canadian erhu master on his love of China’s stringed instruments and how ditching the violin made him a better musician

By Mark Andrews

South China Morning Post. 1st May 2018

Jeremy Moyer discovered the two-stringed erhu on a volunteering trip to Taiwan in 1990. He has just released his third solo album of Chinese stringed instruments and has developed a sound that is entirely unique.

Performing recently in a Shanghai park, a musician gingerly glides his bow across the strings of his erhu before tightening them to bring the instrument back into tune. Soon he is immersed in the haunting sounds of his composition, Snow Legend, with little but the calling of birds in the park for accompaniment.

Across China, it is common to see elderly people in parks playing the two-stringed instrument often referred to in English as a “spike fiddle”. But what makes this performance in Shanghai remarkable is that the musician is a foreigner.

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Mark Andrews has written about everything from Japanese houses to heli hikes on New Zealand glaciers, test drives of Chinese cars to bar and restaurant reviews. He currently specialises in travel articles and reviews of Chinese cars plus articles about the Chinese auto industry.

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