Fostering global friendship through music

| January 4, 2013 | 0 Comments
Dr. Chih-Kung Liu, representative of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Canada, and his wife Huey-Pyng Liu, right, hosted a fundraising dinner that featured the music of violinist Maria Kristic, left, among others.

Dr. Chih-Kung Liu, representative of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Canada, and his wife Huey-Pyng Liu, right, hosted a fundraising dinner that featured the music of violinist Maria Kristic, left, among others.

The Canadian Music Competition (CMC) was the beneficiary of two unique fundraisers in the fall, both hosted by diplomats.

In October, outgoing British High Commissioner Andrew Pocock and his wife, Julie, hosted a cocktail reception at Earnscliffe for music fans who get to enjoy a diplomat’s hospitality and appreciate hearing young people perform beautiful music. The competitors, in turn, get a chance to practise their pieces and perform in front of others.

In November, C.K. Liu, Taiwan’s representative in Canada through the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office (Taiwan’s equivalent of an embassy in countries with a one-China policy), hosted a buffet dinner.

Gilberte LeClerc is married to a former Canadian diplomat and she came up with the idea of the fundraising event a few years ago. Several diplomatic missions have participated, some of them, such as Taiwan, more than once. The CMC sells tickets — $60 per person — and, aside from the expense of bringing instruments, such as a piano, to the residence, printing programs and buying flowers for the participants, all proceeds go to the competition.

“It’s appreciated very much,” Ms LeClerc said of the generosity of diplomats.
For Mr. Liu, it was a chance to meet 60 members of Ottawa’s music-loving community and share some of Taiwan’s culture at the same time.

“We’ve been sponsoring this kind of activity for a decade,” Mr. Liu said. “We gain a great friendship and we are able to provide a platform for young musicians to practise, but also to cultivate a relationship with Taiwan. The more people understand my country, the more they will care about it.”

At the Taiwanese event, ticket-buyers were treated to cocktails and a dinner featuring Chinese food. Three young music students, including one young woman whose ancestry is Taiwanese and who came all the way from New Brunswick for the opportunity, performed before dinner.

“It was the biggest event I’ve hosted here yet,” said Mr. Liu, who arrived in Canada last summer.
Mr. Liu said his mission is happy to consider hosting fundraisers for NGOs or charities in need.
“If an NGO or charity is looking for a location, we’re more than happy to provide one,” he said.

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