China named an Eastern Michigan professor as its first Foreign Expert in music.
Joel Schoenhals is an EMU professor of piano and will be based at Central China Normal University in Wuhan, China.
Schoenhals was selected for the program, which is sponsored by the Chinese government, through an extensive, national search.
“I first came to China in 2009 for concerts and master classes, and have returned each year as opportunities and the need for instruction in China has increased,” Schoenhals said in a press release.
The Foreign Expert program is a three-year commitment. It only runs one month of each year. During that month, Schoenhals will teach piano majors private lessons and master’s classes.
Schoenhals has been teaching piano at Nanchang University in China for three years. He teaches private lessons, master’s classes and piano literature in addition to performing.
Foreign Expert in music is one of many of Schoenhals’s accomplishments. He has been named a Steinway Artist for his performance achievement. He has been an artist, judge and teacher at Besparmak International Piano Festival in North Cyprus. And he has been awarded a faculty research fellowship for “Liuyang He: Piano Arrangements of Chinese Folk Music.”
Schoenhals said he is honored to be chosen.
In a 2014 interview with “The China Daily,” Schoenhals said, “Chinese music is very beautiful and I wish more western people appreciated Chinese music and culture."