Juilliard awards honorary doctorate to Peng Liyuan, wife of Chinese president

Posted on: December 12, 2017

“The wife of Chinese President Xi Jinping has been awarded an honorary doctorate from the world-renowned Juilliard School,” writes Kinling Lo in Monday’s (12/11) South China Morning Post (Hong Kong). “Peng Liyuan—a soprano and popular folk singer—was presented with the degree at [Beijing’s] China Conservatory of Music on Wednesday…. ‘This honor is not given to me alone, it is also a recognition of Chinese folk music and a reflection of the closer cultural ties between Chinese and Americans,’ Peng said … Peng’s singing career began at the age of 15…. In 1980 she was made a People’s Liberation Army soldier of literature and arts, and soon after became a regular face on state-run television programs…. She has performed in public only rarely since Xi took over as Chinese leader in 2012…. Peng last visited [Juilliard] in 2015 while on a state visit to the US with Xi. During that trip, Juilliard announced its partnership with the Tianjin Conservatory of Music in northern China, and a plan to open its first overseas branch—The Tianjin Juilliard School—in 2019. The new facility will offer a US-accredited master’s degree in music, as well as other courses in the performing arts.”

Posted December 12, 2017