Artist Spotlight: Haiqiong Deng

A music performer, scholar and teacher.

Haiqiong Deng is a world-leading Chinese zheng concert musician and has toured extensively in China, Japan, Singapore, Canada and the United States. Haiqiong directed the FSU Chinese Music Ensemble for 17 years, and currently, she is a Ph.D. Candidate in Musicology at the FSU College of Music, writing her dissertation on the revival of the ancient seven-string zither guqin in modern China.

What is necessary for your creative process? Nature. Walking in the woods relaxes my body and frees my mind. Inspirations then naturally occur. A cup of green tea afterward is a must-have.

What fictional character would you like to meet and bring to life? Zhuang Zi, an ancient Chinese philosopher who lived around the 4th century BCE. His writing is full of unlimited imagination and authenticity. To me, he is both realistic and fictional.

What music is playing in your car?
I used to enjoy a lot of baroque music from WFSU radio. But now, my daughter Isabel Liu, a 7-year-old, has become the DJ in my car so most of the time it’s popular music, and I groove along.

What is the last book you read that had an impact on you? I read books every day due to my dissertation project. “The Importance of Living” (1937) by Lin Yutang, a New York bestseller who introduced millions to the noble art of leaving things undone, has had a deep impact on me. It touches on the essential Chinese humanity through a cross-cultural perspective. Comparing to the stereotypes and prejudice popularized in social media and political propaganda today, a book such as this truly contributes to genuine understanding among people, cultures and humanities. It serves the purpose of showing the well-being of life.

It’s time for dinner; what are we going to eat? I’d like to go home and eat the homestyle Chinese food Nan Liu (my husband) cooks.

If you were trapped in a TV show or movie for a month, which would it be? Chinese Kung Fu movies.

What superpower would you like to have? Healing—both to myself and
to others.

What have your learned from failure? Another opportunity of learning; an enriched experience.

What do you hope you will be remembered for? A sense of warmth and maybe a smile at the same time.


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This content is provided by the Council on Culture & Arts, the capital area’s umbrella agency for arts and culture.


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