MOZART SCHOOL OF MUSIC FOUNDER
Wendy immigrated to Vancouver, Canada, at the age of 2 to a hard-working family from China. As they struggled to make ends meet and raise a family, as new Canadians, it was important to them to try and provide the best education and opportunities they could for their son and daughters. To that end, Wendy was enrolled in piano lessons at the age of 5 under the direction of Eliza Ip.
Encouraged and nurtured by her teacher, she was considered a prodigy because she displayed incredible natural talent and discipline - sometimes practicing more than 10 hours per day. Like a lot of talented and gifted children, music became her escape from the sting of school experiences as she marched to her own drum.
On a fluke, at her friend's urging, she entered the Fairchild Media Group's first annual Chinese Canadian Songwriter's Quest." This event was a major turning point for Wendy as it was the first time her own composition was heard in front of the public and among music industry professionals that she respected.
On her first attempt, she won second place and caught the attention of one of the judges, Mr. Joseph Koo, the most influential and prolific songwriter from Hong Kong. Mr. Alvin Kwok, from Universal Music, another iconic figure in the Hong Kong music scene offered Wendy a contract as a staff songwriter, but her mother insisted she finish her university and garner some life experience in order to deal with the entertainment industry. Heeding this advice, she completed her studies.
However, unable to wait, in her fourth year of university, she founded the Mozart School of Music as a home-based business in 1998. She was 21 at the time and still continuing her University studies. Wendy employed between 10 and 15 music teachers at Mozart School of Music. She carefully chose to the most talented musicians studying with her at the University of British Columbia Music Program. The school upgraded to a brick and mortar establishment in 2000 that housed seven rooms on Kingsway and Royal Oak near Metrotown in Burnaby.
Wendy believes discipline, with a daily schedule of commitment to a musical instrument will lead one towards his/her goal and achievement. Practice leads to perfection. Wendy also emphasizes that music develops a person's left and right brain, improving their scholastic capacity, becoming a well-rounded person. Children will able to express themselves and get in touch with their emotions.
There are many opportunities for them to share their music in a group setting, to play in front of other children to develop their social skills through a variety of different platforms. Besides the twice a year recitals, our school has organized musical performances sharing the stage with celebrities such as Alice Lau at the RiverRock Theatre in Richmond, at the senior homes, and charity events. Many of our senior students have gotten paid gigs and solo performances at The Children's Hospital Gala, St. Mary's Hospital Fundraising Gala, Habitat for Humanity fundraiser, etc. One fun activity our school has organized previously was a fundraising team for S.U.C.C.E.S.S's annual summer Dragon Walk.
No wonder the Mozart School of Music was voted The Best Music School in Burnaby for six years in a row by Burnaby Now Newspaper.
By age 15 she was qualified to teach piano. To augment her income, she began teaching young students and by the time she graduated from high school, she realized she wanted a career in music. Taking out a student loan, she entered Capilano College Music Program and later graduated from the University of British Columbia.
Though her musical training was in classical piano and composition, she was also a fan of the Hong Kong pop music scene and many other genres from other countries and styles. Some of her favorite artists at the time were Alan Tam, Jacky Cheung, Anita Mui, and Leslie Cheung. She was also influenced by Michael Jackson, George Michael, Celine Dion, Yanni, and Kenny G. Music was in her blood, and with more exposure the more she wanted to compose and write her own music. Wendy was always writing songs, and improvising on her piano, hoping one-day that one of her idols will able to sing her song that it would become a billboard hit that everyone will sing along to.