Lunar New Year at the Chinese Garden of Friendship 2022

.Chinese Gardens of Friendship

The Institute for Australian and Chinese Arts and Culture has partnered for the very first time with the Chinese Garden of Friendship in Darling Harbour to present an exciting program of music in celebration of the Lunar New Year of the Tiger.

From Saturday 29 January to Sunday 13 February between 12 and 2 pm, visitors to the garden can expect to hear a range of traditional and contemporary Chinese music performed by an interesting group of emerging and established performers specially chosen by IAC Research Fellow Dr Nicholas Ng, who will also be performing.

This project is funded by the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment, NSW Government.

Saturday 29 January, 12-2 pm

Sydney Guyun Guzheng Arts Academy | Julia Luo (guzheng) & students

Sunday 30 January, 12-2 pm

Ying & Dora Duet | Ying Liu (erhu) & Dora Maria (violin)

Saturday 5 February, 12-2 pm

Hu Lei (yangqin) & Hu Weigang (guan yue)

Sunday 6 February, 12-2 pmBilly Han (dizi), Christine Guo (erhu) & Miumiu (yangqin)
Saturday 12 February, 12-2 pm

Sydney Guyun Guzheng Arts Academy | *Katrina Meng (guzheng) & Cherr Weng (guzheng)

Alice Tauv (DJ) & Nicholas Ng (erhu, zhonghu, hulusi)

*12-1 pm only

Sunday 13 February, 12-2 pm

*Tony Wheeler (guqin)

Australian Pipa Association | Lucathea Xiaoyan Cui (pipa) & Molly Menglu Ouyang (pipa)

*12-1 pm only

Artist Biographies

Luca Cui edited a

Lucathea Xiaoyan Cui

Lucathea Xiaoyan Cui 崔筱妍 began learning the pipa at the age of 10. Her first teacher Jing Wang is a national first-level performer and master of art from the Central Conservatory of Music. From the age of 12, Lucathea learned the pipa from Zhiyong Li, an excellent performer from the Sichuan Symphony Orchestra. She passed the Sichuan Pipa Examination Grade 10 and has received several awards as a student. After arriving in Australia for further education in 2021, she became the member of the Australia Pipa Association, joined weekly ensemble courses and occasionally took part in some concerts and folk music related performance activities. Lucathea is currently an undergraduate student of the University of Sydney, majoring in psychology. She assists Dr. Lulu Liu (founder, Australia Pipa Association) with pipa teaching in various youth ensemble classes.

Billy Han a

Billy Han (dizi, xun)

Billy Han 韓君禹 has been playing Chinese wind instruments for more than 15 years starting at age 7. From 2013 to 2017 he was the principal dizi of the Hong Kong Baptist University (Zhuhai Campus) Chinese Ensemble. He came to Sydney in 2017 and has since actively performed with other musicians and ensembles. Billy takes pride in actively introducing Chinese music to the local community, including facilitating workshops in schools such as Hurstville Public School and Newington College. Since 2019, he has been teaching Chinese instruments to develop student interest and appreciation of Chinese music and culture. He is a frequent guest of the Sydney Conservatorium Chinese Ensemble and has featured at the Floriade Festival (Canberra), the Sydney Sacred Music Festival and other events.

Hu Lei a 

Hu Lei (yangqin)

Hu Lei 胡磊 is a highly renowned yangqin performer. She studied under the late Professor Qian Fangping, yangqin performer and educator, and was admitted to the China Conservatory of Music with honours in 1983 under Chinese yangqin, educator and composer Professor Xiang Zuhua. After graduating in 1987, she became a folk music teacher at the China Dance Academy. In 1989, she arrived in Australia and was invited to participate in many art festival performances and film music recording sessions. Mrs Hu has taught and performed on the yangqin for more than 30 years, and established the "Chinese Style * Music Workshop", focusing on cultivating Chinese teenagers in Australia to learn and inherit the national music culture. Since 2015, she has been teaching the yangqin at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music. Many of her students have achieved high scores in the HSC music examinations. Lei has won gold medals in international music competitions and achieved excellent exam results in both China and Australia. Since 2016, she has been principal yangqin in the Hua Music Troupe and has adjudicated the "Talent Family" Australian Youth Talent Competition for Xinkuai Media since 2019. In October of the same year, she led students to represent Australia in the World Dulcimer Conference for the first time. Since 2020, she has served as a member of the Central Conservatory of Music Overseas Grade Examination - Australia Regional Professional Committee.

Hu Weigang 

Hu Weigang (dizi, sheng)

Hu Weigang 胡卫刚 began his musical studies as a child with his father, the late Mr Hu Haiquan, internationally acclaimed suona (double reed pipe). In 1973, he entered the China Railway Art Troupe with honours at the age of 12 and was recorded for many soundtracks for film TV while receiving many awards. In 1987, Mr Hu graduated from the China Conservatory of Music with honours and became a soloist on the suona in the China Central Chinese Orchestra. After migrating to Australia in 1991, he was invited to participate in the Melbourne International Arts Festival and was engaged in teaching and recording work at Monash University. In 2016, he founded the "Chinese Music Club" with a group of professional performers of traditional music. In 2018, Mr Hu was invited to participate in the finale solo performance of Yo-Yo Ma's Silk Road Orchestra at the Sydney Opera House. He continues to direct the Chinese Wind Music Workshop.

Julia Luo a 

Julia Luo (guzheng)

Julia Luo 罗欧思宇 is a teacher and founding director of Sydney Guyun Guzheng Arts Academy. She is also an examiner of the guzheng grading examination system of the Chinese Conservatory of Music. She currently serves as Chinese Music Ensemble, University of Sydney Conservatory of Music Zheng tutor while completing her Bachelor of Music majoring in Historical Performance (guzheng) at Sydney Conservatorium of Music. She has performed at the Sydney Opera House, Sydney city Town Hall, CCTV, SBS, ABC and other large-scale well-known stages and TV programs.

Nicholas Ng ERHU a 

Dr Nicholas Ng (erhu, hulusi)

Dr Nicholas Ng 黄建文 is a composer, performer and Research Fellow at the Institute for Australian and Chinese Arts and Culture (Western Sydney University). A former Lecturer (Australian National University) and Research Fellow (Queensland Conservatorium), he began teaching Chinese music and western harmony at Sydney Conservatorium in 2016. On the erhu, Nicholas has toured to festivals around Australia, New Zealand, North America, Canada and Europe such as the KunstenFESTIVALdesarts (Brussels) and Sydney Festival. He has composed for The Song Company, Melbourne Symphony Orchestra and other ensembles. Nicholas works closely with William Yang and Annette Shun Wah and appeared in Double Delicious with Benjamin Law. He has produced a book and various articles on Australia-China exchange. Nicholas established the ANU Chinese Classical Music Ensemble (2003) and curated the festival ENCOUNTERS: China (2010). His work has been documented on SBS Mandarin Radio, ABC Music Show, and in the ABC Compass program, Divine Rhythms.

Dora Maria 

Dora Maria (violin)

Dora Maria is an in-demand acoustic/electric violinist and violist with a multi-faceted career across many genres. Currently based in Sydney Australia, Dora studied at the Royal College of Music in London before working as a regular session violinist. Dora has performed and toured with artists including Eminem, Flume, Taku, Sam Smith, Hanson, Michael Bublé, Hans Zimmer, London Grammar, The Stereophonics, Pete Tong for Ministry Of Sound, Peking Duk, Jess Mauboy, The Veronicas, Guy Sebastian, Delta Goodrem, Rai Thistlethwayte, Vera Blue and many more. She plays in “Ying & Dora Duet”, a newly formed string ensemble focusing on cross-cultural diversity and a variety of different musical genres.

Molly Ouyang 

Dr Molly Menglu Ouyang (pipa)

Dr Molly Menglu Ouyang 欧阳梦璐 is a member of the Australian Pipa Association and has been playing pipa for more than twenty years. Molly has been invited as guest performers for several local events in Sydney and Chinese Musical Ensemble Concerts and obtained the highest level of the National Pipa Grade in 2015.

Alice Tauv a 

Alice Tauv (DJ)

Alice Tauv, also known as Arisse, is a Full-time Creative who DJs, dances and produces events. She was named Finalist in the 2020 Women of the Year Award by Canterbury-Bankstown Council for her work in the community. Arisse started DJing in 2017. Originally making her rounds in the underground Street Dance Battles, she has since expanded her skills and musical selection to spin at parties, public and private events, and corporate events. She spins a large array of genres spanning from R&B, Soul, Hip Hop, Funk, Disco to your current Top 40s. Arisse has over 13 years of dance experience. She continuously works on her craft by learning from both local and international dancers in a variety of different Street Dance styles, mainly focusing on Hiphop Freestyle. She has represented Australia in numerous competitions in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Korea, Taiwan and Singapore. Arisse continues to support and build the next generation of dancers through classes and workshops at local schools, universities and street classes. Arisse directs Destructive Steps Dance Association, a non-profit organisation utilising Street Dance as a positive outlet to run programs and workshops for the youth and young adults, and works closely with councils and organisations to produce and curate events ( She is also the current Festival Director of the Destructive Steps Street Dance Festival that garners over 1,500 of Street Dancers from all over Australia to compete (

Tony Wheeler 

Tony Wheeler (clarinet, qin, zhongruan)

Performer, composer, and teacher Tony Wheeler graduated from the Queensland Conservatorium of Music in 1982 with a B.Mus. with Distinction. He spent two years under scholarship (1985-87) at the Shanghai Conservatory studying Chinese composition, ruan and guqin where he received a Certificate of Studies in Chinese music. In 1991 he graduated from the University of Hong Kong with a Master’s Degree in Composition for Chinese instruments. As well as maintaining a busy teaching schedule, Tony frequently performs on Chinese and Western instruments in a contemporary and or improvisatory context, and has played in major orchestras in Australia. He has had more than 20 of his original compositions published by Wirripang.

Ying Liu

Ying Liu (erhu)

Sydney-based erhu virtuoso Ying Liu 刘莹 has established an international reputation for her compelling performances and artistic individualism. Ying has performed and worked with many renowned musicians and ensembles across the world including Gerard Willems, Claire Edwardes, Richard Clayderman, Fang Jinlong, Wang Peng, Zhu Changyao and so on. She plays in “Ying & Dora Duet”, a newly formed string ensemble focusing on cross-cultural diversity and a variety of different musical genres.

IAC LOGONSW Government Chinese Gardens LOGO

This project in the Darling Harbour precinct acknowledges the Gadigal people of the Eora Nation, the traditional owners of the land and waters upon which the hotel stands. First Peoples have been living, meeting and practicing culture in Darling Harbour for thousands of years.