Cong Gu has been a member of the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra’s Second Violin section since he first came to Australia in 1992.
Cong was born into a musical family in Shanghai and started learning the piano at the age of five and violin at seven. He completed his Bachelor Degree of Music at the Shanghai Conservatory of Music and then at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London, where he completed his Masters of Music.
He studied Violin with Professor Yuen Pei-Wen and Professor John Glickman and has played in master classes with world-renowned violinists including Yehudi Menuhin, Issac Stern, Yfrah Neaman, Franco Gulli and Gerald Poulet. Cong has appeared as a recital artist in Shangai, London, Spain and Ireland. In the late 1980s he was First Violin with the Tenerife Symphony Orchestra in Spain and joined the RTE National Symphony Orchestra in Dublin, Ireland as First Violin, before moving to Australia.
What is your greatest performance experience so far?
My recital in Spain, Tennerife. I did not have much notice or preparation for the performance and it was in a new concert hall so there was a lot of pressure to play well. The audience was huge and filled with many of my colleagues which just added to the moment.
What is your favourite Melbourne Symphony Orchestra memory?
There are two! Firstly, the 2000 European tour and secondly the tour in China. The concert we did in Shanghai was the first time I played in my hometown since the early 1980’s so it was very special for me.
What attracted you to join an orchestra?
Orchestral musicians are very different to soloists because they play a much wider range of repertoire and get many different performance experiences. I enjoy the variety of being an orchestral musician.