Painting the River: The Art of Chinese Writing - Shaw Pong Liu - Arts For Learning Massachusetts


Painting the River: The Art of Chinese Writing

Type: Performance|Remote
Art Form: Music|Visual Arts|Exploring Cultures
Grade Level: K-8
Scheduling Request

Discovering the Art of Chinese Writing Through Interactive Music and Drawing

In a vivid sonic and visual journey, Shaw Pong invites listeners to draw pictures as she performs Chinese and original music on the violin and erhu. Following each song and creative drawing, Liu shares the visual history of each Chinese character based on the same subject - river, flower, and horse - showing how each character evolved from an ancient drawing over thousands of years. Liu joyfully shares the physical pleasure - and precision - of writing each Chinese character, as students have the chance to try writing Chinese themselves. Listeners will end the journey with a set of their own hand-made drawings and Chinese written characters!

Program available in person, or live online.

Length: 45 minutes
Audience Limit: 300
Curriculum Connection: Foreign Languages; History/Social Studies; Chinese language, music, and culture

Single performance: $750

Additional performance: $600
Travel: $75 per day
Pricing may vary for weekends/out-of-school time
Processing Fee of $30 added to all contracts

Remote (live)

School sets up link for remote meeting and makes the artist a co-host. Screen share must be enabled. Artist may need to sign on 20-30 minutes prior to the meeting to check sound levels. A representative from the school must be on the call to facilitate Q+A and mute students as needed. Students should be provided with drawing materials and at least 4 pieces of paper. Please introduce the performer as an Arts for Learning Massachusetts artist.




  • 1 reserved parking space
  • 1 microphone stand with boom
  • 1 armless chair
  • 2 music stands or 1 easel for display of largeā€format posters
  • projector and screen (if possible, please let AFLMA know if these cannot be provided)

Performance Space Requirements: 

  • Students seated on floor, if possible.
  • Prefer as intimate (small) a space as can comfortably accommodate all audience members.
  • Please provide students with drawing materials and at least 4 pieces of paper, a hard surface for each student to draw on, such as a table, desk, or clipboard

Minimum space for performer: 5x8 feet

Arrival time before first performance: 30 minutes

Strike time: 15 minutes

Time needed between performances: 15 minutes

Grades should be consecutive.

Please introduce the performer as an Arts for Learning Massachusetts artist.