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The National Center for the Performing Arts (NCPA) holds a press conference for its Piano Virtuosos 2020 event in Beijing on Jan. 13, 2020. [Photo courtesy of the NCPA]

The National Center for the Performing Arts (NCPA) will stage nine concerts centered around compositions by Beethoven as part of its annual "Piano Virtuosos" series to commemorate the 250th anniversary of the German composer's birth.

At a press conference on Monday, Liu Xiaolong, associate professor at China's Central Conservatory of Music, said the concerts will offer a good opportunity for audiences to feel the enduring charm of Beethoven's music, which is full of extraordinary rhythmic vitality and huge emotional power.

Chinese pianist Yin Chengzong will play Beethoven's Sonata Appassionata at the opening performance of this year's Piano Virtuosos. "In 1959, I played the sonata at a competition in Vienna. Over the past 61 years, every performance has refined my understanding of the work," Yin said.

Starting on Tuesday, 15 piano masters from around the world, including Chinese pianists Lang Lang and Chen Sa, French classical pianist Philippe Entremont and Austrian pianist Rudolf Buchbinder, will present 16 concerts during the Piano Virtuosos series.

Initiated in 2011, the NCPA has invited over 90 world-class pianists to present musical pieces from a range of different genres at its Piano Virtuosos event.

Zhang Siyao, who oversees the musical event, said, "In recent years, the concerts have been gradually extending beyond classical piano music to include diverse elements, so as to serve the interests of audiences from various walks of life."