Lang Lang: “Messi gives me a lot of inspiration"
Lang Lang, an international first-level concert pianist from China, is increasingly well known around the world for his concert performances, television appearances, albums and soundtracks. Also known as a big Barça fan, he was invited to the presidential box for the match FC Barcelona-Real Madrid, one day before his concert which is to be held in “Auditori” in Barcelona. Before the match, he received a Barça shirt with his name printed from the president of FC Barcelona, Sandro Rosell, and was interviewed by Barça TV.
How many times have you been in Barcelona? What is your impression of the city?
It is my sixth time here. Every time I am here there is always a good atmosphere. Barcelona is an international city. It is so beautiful.
What does it mean for you to be here today in a FCB-Real Madrid match? Is it a dream to be here?
I've always been a big football fan, especially a Barça fan. To be in Barcelona for an important game is a great pleasure. Today I am here in the presidential box of Camp Nou, an area so special, sitting with a lot of good friends, that it makes me feel very special and I am very excited to watch this game.
You said “playing the piano makes me happy”, so how do you feel every time you watch a Barça game?
I enjoy watching Barça play, because they turn football into an art show. They play the best football in the world. In my opinion, it's not just about football when they play. It could be called art. They play the most beautiful game. For me, they are artists.
Your name “Lang” means brilliant, do you think Messi is also brilliant?
I am a big fan of Messi. He makes football a spectacular sport show. Actually we met last year in Wembly after the final of Champions League. I also met Xavi, Iniesta and other great Barça players. I always wish them good luck in every match.
Could explain to us the story of when you met Messi?
Yes, after the final of the Champions League in Wembly last year, I met Messi for the first time. A friend introduced us. Messi is very approachable, like a normal boy living next door. Ever since we have become good friends, we even have conversations on Tencent Weibo (Chinese Twitter). I have also invited him to my concert tomorrow but unfortunately he couldn’t come because of the tight match schedule. I wish we would have more chance to talk about art or sport in the future. I hope our friendship is long lasting.
Could we say you are “the piano playing Messi” or Messi is “Lang Lang on the pitch”?
Thanks for the metaphor! Messi is my favourite football player who gives me a lot of inspiration. Football is so interesting because of him. My mission is to take classical music and the piano to every corner of the world, and bring young audiences closer to art by the experience of attending a concert.