First lady to attend Ju Percussion concert in Vienna

Taipei, Sept. 26 (CNA) Taiwan's first lady Chow Mei-ching will attend a concert by the Taiwan-based Ju Percussion Group in Vienna, Austria, next Monday in her capacity as honorary leader of the music ensemble, a spokesman for the group said Friday. Ju Percussion, which kicked off its three-week 2014 Europe concert tour earlier this month, gave a well-received performance at Brucknerhaus Linz in Austria Tuesday, the spokesman said. Music commentators in The Ober飉terreichische Nachrichten (O烰), an Austrian newspaper, gave the performance six stars --the highest rating-- according to the spokesman. The percussion ensemble is set to perform Friday at Alte Oper Erfurt in Germany before returning to Austria for a concert in Vienna next Monday, which Chow will attend, the spokesman said. Chow, a staunch supporter of Taiwan's cultural and arts groups, has accompanied Ju Percussion several times on their concert tours at home and abroad. During President Ma Ying-jeou's visit to Central America in June 2009, Chow, who was on her first trip abroad as first lady, attracted great media attention when she appeared at a Ju Percussion concert there. Ju Tzong-ching, founder of the group, studied percussion more than 30 years ago at Vienna Academy of Music with Walter Veigl and Richard Hochrainer, former principal percussionist with the Wiener Philharmoniker, according to the spokesman. Ju will be leading his group in a performance in the city for the first time since he completed his studies there, the spokesman said. The Ju Percussion Group was founded in 1986 as Taiwan's first professional percussion ensemble. (By Sabine Cheng and Evelyn Kao)