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The Diary of Ma Sicong (1918) – I Had my first love affair at the age of 11

I was 11 years old the first time I even heard mention of a violin, My older brother Siqui wrote home that he had decided to play the violin as a hobby while studying at the university in Paris. (My father was a scholar and believed the French schools were far superior to the Chinese.)

Unfortunately, Siqui was in a severe bicycle accident and had to return home to heal. As he played to pass the time, I became mesmerized by the beautiful music this complicated instrument could make with small changes to the strings and bow.

When Siqui was healthy enough to return to Paris, I convinced my family to let me go with him to study the violin with European masters. My mother was very reluctant to let her 11-year-old son, who spoke only Chinese to leave home to pursue a youthful fantasy about mastering an unfamiliar musical instrument. Eventually, she consented. “Okay, Ma, I will allow you to go. But, I never want to hear you are homesick and want to come home”.
I never did! I also learned an important life lesson in Paris—achieving dreams requires immense determination.



Read The King of Violins: The Extraordinary Life of Ma Sciong, China’s Greatest Violin Virtuoso by M.G. Crisci and Cheng Ken Chi, Ph.D., the heartbreaking story of China’s most celebrated violin prodigy, Ma Sicong, who composes his first concerto at the age of 12, becomes China’s most celebrated violin prodigy, and ultimately an enemy of the state.

“A perfectly balanced symphony that honors truth and dignity. You’ll feel as though you are sitting on Ma’s shoulder as his complicated life unfolds.”
– US Review of Books

“Remarkable. The bittersweet story of Ma Sicong’s dignified, often tumultuous life, and the way it was told, left me feeling I had met Ma–and was better because of it.”
– Independent Book Review

“The King of Violins is a must-read that will stay with you. It’s filled with so many involving themes and surprising twists that you’ll become engrossed trying to figure out what might be coming next.”
– International Review of Books

DATE: Oct.20.2020 | CATEGORY: My Books