New Theory Exclusive with New Age & Contemporary Instrumental Composer, Tony Chen By Rachel Dares 




I had the great pleasure of sitting down with New Age & Contemporary Instrumental Composer, Tony Chen.

Rachel Dares: What are your earliest musical memories?

Tony Chen: You’ll probably find this pretty funny, but I would have to say my early musical memories were not my fondest. I felt I was “forced” by my parents to learn to play the piano.

Rachel Dares: What led you to become a composer?

Tony Chen: In middle school, as a teenager, I was selected by my teacher to play a piano duet with another classmate for our school’s art festival event. That was the time when I started becoming a bit more interested in playing music. I discovered that my classmate could play music by ear (a gift of hearing a piece of music and being able to play it on the piano without reading a music sheet), I found this very fascinating and started exploring this technique myself.

During the 90’s, the New Age composer Yanni was very popular in China, his music is a combination of electronic music and a full orchestra. Around this time, I started to explore electronic keyboards, and later connected it to computers. I was about 16 or 17 years of age, when I began composing my own musical pieces using computer technology. It was at this time, that I also became captivated with film soundtracks, especially, Disney films and its musicals.

In 2003, I left China for the UK to study music and ventured in the pursuit of a music career. It’s history ever since.

Rachel Dares: How would you describe your music?



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Tony Chen's New Music - In A Realm Without Time 



In a realm without Time, there is no past or future, so there are no joys and sorrows brought by past experiences and the unknown situations of the future. You only have the pure and calm mindset at the current moment. Actually, saying "current moment" is just to describe the realm state. The realm actually has no concept of Time at all. Actually in our daily life, many tribulations are caused by traces of past experiences in the heart, as well as the fears for the unknown future or plans and overly pursuits of a "beautiful" future from your own perspective. Once the plans or attachments for the future are not satisfied, we would feel great pain. Things often don't go exactly as planned. And in the next moment, we may passively continue this cycle again - the pain from the past and continuing to plan for a better personal future. However, the only thing overlooked is the current moment - are you calm and at ease at the current moment? Can you only focus the current moment without being affected by the thoughts from the past and plans for the future? This music piece is called "In A Realm Without Time". I hope the music piece could become an inspiration for all of us to try to manage our own current moments, and letting go the frustrations and attachments from the past and for the future, since all calm and beautiful current moments pave the way for a beautiful future.

The composer got inspiration of this piece from his practice of Falun Dafa at his current level. (Falun Dafa is a Chinese meditation exercise based on the principle of Truthfulness, Compassion, Tolerance. For more info: http://falundafa.org)