During the CYCO China trip, I performed with a lot of other people. I learned how to cooperate with other musicians and how to listen and pay attention to different speeds when I am playing with other orchestras so that I could match them when the speed that I am playing is not the same.

The instrument that I play is Chinese flute (the Dizi). I started to learn the Chinese flute is because my dad thought that it was light and easy to carry. The challenge is that the Chinese flute uses your fingers to plug the holes, but the western flute uses mechanical plugs. It is a difficult instrument, but this trip made me appreciate playing the Chinese flute a lot more.

This tour made me accomplish a lot of my goals, I learned not to be overtaken with stage fright and how to relax in stressful situations. I learned how to tune my instrument and how to lead a song, such as Lao Liu Ban. It is very hard to do the trills in this song, but I learned how to do it during the trip. As my new goals for the future, I will try to learn harder songs and do some more solo parts. I’m still a little scared to play all by myself, but I will learn to overcome that. Before, there were some notes that I couldn’t play, but after this trip, I am able to play them!

I communicated with a lot of different people in China, such as my roommate, Jordan. I learned that Jordan started to learn erhu 8 years ago and stopped for 3-4 years in the middle.

After the trip, I noticed that our group has improved a lot; we were able to perform “Little Apple” and “Billie Jean” a lot better and we learned to play many of our songs with a different conductor. The group that we exchanged music with in Nanhai didn’t even need a music score, they were able to memorize it. I even memorized a few of our music scores!