“Music criticism should be to musicians what ornithology is to birds,” she wrote recently on her Twitter feed.
“She will play as a soloist but also as an accompanist when important things are happening in the orchestra. That is an unusual quality for a card-carrying virtuoso.” (quote: Michael Tilson Thomas, SFO conductor)
“I love saunas. That’s my way of relaxing.” She added, laughing: “I’m so lazy. People ask me, ‘What sports do you do?’ None. I love to read, and I have a Kindle now.”
Ms. Wang’s attire has generated lively discussions about what is appropriate for classical artists to wear. The orange minidress she wore for a performance of Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 3 with the Los Angeles Philharmonic at the Hollywood Bowl in August set off debate in newspapers and blogs.
Ms. Wang said she was initially both “weirded out” and amused by the reaction, noting that she had already worn the same dress without fanfare in Santa Fe, N.M.; at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam; and at the Verbier Festival in Switzerland. “Europe loved it,” she said, so she hadn’t thought it would be a big deal to wear it in Los Angeles.
“They were paying attention to this rather than the music,” she said. “Which makes sense, as L.A. is kind of superficial and more visual. But they have rules about what classical musicians should be wearing, which I think is stupid.”
Yet she acknowledged that the publicity might have helped her Carnegie debut in October sell out. For the first half of that concert, she “looked like a nun,” she said, in a long black dress.
“I wanted to do the shock value,” she added. “I can wear long and black too. I like being versatile.”