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April 12, 2024

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Music and songs offer a life without limitation for people with hearing loss

“Hear the Love, Embrace the Future,” a charitable concert presenting the talent of international school students in Shanghai while bridging communication between hearing-challenged people and their hearing counterparts, drew its final curtain at the Shanghai Concert Hall on March 28.

The event brought together choir and string troupes from six international schools in Shanghai. They were the Shanghai Hong Qiao International School, Wellington College International Shanghai, NACIS Shanghai, Shanghai Singapore International School, Harrow International School Shanghai and Nord Anglia International School Shanghai, Pudong and the Dolphin Hearing Disabled Children’s Choir.

Specially invited from Tianjin in north China, the choir was seen a magical catalysis for both musical exchanges between young people and a rise in awareness on helping disadvantaged groups among the audience and further beyond.

Shanghai Daily, the local English news agency now celebrating its 25th anniversary, has noticed a need among expat families in Shanghai in their hopes to present some musical talents of their children on the stages of Shanghai’s culture venues after years of corresponding and service with international schools and communities in the city.

At the same time, Sonova, a global leader in innovative hearing care solutions, fosters a world in which there is a solution to every hearing loss and all people equally enjoy the delight of hearing. By providing industry-leading audiological performance and outstanding consumer experience, they help people hear the world.

The two sides united to create the opportunity for this music exchange to raise people’s awareness about hearing loss.

“‘The world speaks to me in pictures, my soul answers in music,’ wrote Rabindranath Tagore. The aim of our concert echoes Tagore’s calling. Through connecting people with lovely music notes and kindness, we raise the awareness from the public on caring the hearing-impaired people and approach, and knock on the doors of their silent world gently,” said Zhu Jiajian, head of Shanghai Daily.

“In addition to resort to dancing as a way of their expression, people with hearing loss can also sing as a way of enriching and reconstructing their life. That is a message we try to pass on to the general public through holding this concert,” said Fang Fang, vice president and general manager of Sonova China.

After a compacted and brief rehearsal, wires connected digital guitar, bass and drum, and their electricity went through and generated the first thorough and heating notes of “Zombie,” presented by students and teacher from Nord Anglia International School Shanghai, Pudong as a warm-up, and the concert unfolded.

The student choir from Wellington College International Shanghai sang the Celtic anthem “Mo Ghile Mear” and a South African traditional song “Singabahambayo” with both vocal and instrument presentations.

The mixed voice choir from Harrow International School Shanghai staged “Sing Gently,” “United in Purpose” and “Can You Hear Me” with their soft and subtle voices.

Following were two choirs of different age groups from NACIS Shanghai, showing Bach’s mass in B minor “Dona Nobis Pacem,” “Solfége Symphony,” “Skye Boat Song” and “A Million Dreams,” an interlude from the movie “The Greatest Showman.”

In addition to choir performances, string troupes from Shanghai Hong Qiao International School and Shanghai Singapore International School presented pieces including “Viva La Vida,” “You Raise Me Up,” “Sharpe of You,” “Eine Kleine Nachtmusik” and “Can-Can.”

Well-known Chinese pianist Song Siheng and Armenia violinist Astrid Poghosyan joined the concert as distinguished guests with a Mozart piano sonata “Alla Turca” and a violin and cello duo “Armenian Folk Dance” respectively.

The Dolphin Hearing Disabled Children’s Choir, founded 10 years ago, is a special children’s art group composed of children with severe hearing loss who wear cochlear implants. Under the guidance of professional teachers, and with the help of love from all walks of life, the Little Dolphin choir has stepped out of a process of rehabilitation of children with hearing loss in an artistic way.

According to the latest statistics from the World Health Organization, 430 million people worldwide suffer from hearing loss at disability level, accounting for 5 percent of the total population. Among them, 34 million are children. China has about 70 million hearing-impaired persons.


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